How Your Business Benefits From a Risk Control Survey

A risk control survey is a standard practice for most Society Insurance policyholders that helps us determine the best ways to protect your business. But what is a risk control survey? How is it scheduled? What do you, as a business owner, do to prepare for a risk control survey? Here we’ll go over all of this and more so you know what to expect..  

What is Risk Control?

Risk control, also known as hazard control, is a part of the risk management process in which methods are implemented for neutralizing or reducing identified risks. Controlled risks remain potential threats, but the probability of an associated incident or the consequence thereof is significantly reduced.  

The small things you do every day makes a big difference in protecting your business, employees and customers. Our risk control survey identifies the small details and makes suggestions for necessary improvements that could make a big difference.

How Does a Risk Control Survey Work?

A risk control survey has two main components. First, there is an on-site assessment of potential hazards and verification that controls are in place. The most significant hazards are generally found in commercial cooking areas. Equipment such as ovens, hoods, grease filters, etc. are some common causes of incidents and therefore need to be examined during a risk control survey. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), 21% of all restaurant fires are caused by deep fat fryers, often due to lack of cleaning and/or proper maintenance.

The second component of a risk control survey is a safety consultation about the business safety program and how to improve it. In this phase, we work to help educate employees on basic safety controls for providing a safe and healthy workplace. This includes a review of all the free safety services available to you that help protect your employees and your business.

What to Expect During a Risk Control Survey  

The following are the basic elements of our risk control survey:

  1. Initial interview. We ask questions about your operations to gain a better understanding of your business. To make this process as smooth as possible, you should prepare the following information: the age and square footage of the building, recent maintenance upgrades (like a new roof, new HVAC, electrical updates, etc.), diagram of the building, employee safety training, and any other information you feel would be helpful to know about your business.  
  2. Tour the building. We conduct a tour of your facility to identify the exposures and the controls in place, such as proper cleaning of grease removal filters and hood and duct work. During this process, we will also take pictures to document our inspection for the underwriter.  
  3. Slip and fall hazards. Next, we look for slip and fall hazards and controls.  Here are some examples. Are throw rugs in the main entrance and exit areas for preventing slip and fall exposures, especially during the winter months? Are all egresses cleared of obstructions? Are there non-slip mats near sinks and cooking equipment? 
  4. Training. We review and evaluate your current safety orientation training and ongoing training for your employees.
  5. Improvements. If we find any areas for improvement for protecting your business, your employees and your customers, we will discuss these prior to leaving.
  6. Final documentation. After the visit, we send a letter for documentation. This letter will include any opportunities for improvement that we discussed during our risk control survey.

Society Insurance Protects Your Livelihood

The bottom line is that we conduct risk control surveys to help protect your biggest investment: your employees and your business.  The small details of your exposures and controls make a big difference in protecting your livelihood.  

If you are looking for any safety-related information or would like to schedule a visit with your risk control representative, please contact your insurance agent to get the process started.


Paul is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin - Whitewater with a degree in Occupational Safety. He is a Certified Safety Professional (CSP) with over 33 years of experience in the safety field.

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