Brokers are using technology to respond to the challenges of lockdown

The COVID19 lockdown has been a catalyst for brokers to accelerate their use of cloud-based technology platforms to manage client relationships remotely. Unlike ecommerce, which is very much in the public domain, Insurtech platforms have surged in relevance and market share behind the scenes.

Cape Town based Simply Financial Services, an Insurtech company selling life, disability and funeral cover online, has seen a 5-fold increase in sales by brokers on their No-Touch Broker Platform since lockdown started. This mirrors international trends. For example, in the UK, AEGIS has seen substantial increase in demand for their PPL Platform which provides underwriting for several (non-life) products, allowing their underwriters to continue delivering business during lockdown[i].

Where brokers have previously viewed Insurtech platforms as competition to their business, they are now seeing the value of adopting cloud-based systems that allow them to continue writing new business and servicing clients. Technology platforms ease the administrative burden and give brokers the freedom to focus on the relationship with the customer – which is where the real value lies in the intermediary role. Nathan Golia, chief editor of Digital Insurance magazine says “if we ever needed a reminder as an industry of the importance of technology, remote functionality, online interaction and digital processes, it is this current environment in which many of us find ourselves.”[ii]

More than just facilitating broker relationships, technology platforms also provide the opportunity to improve governance and lessen fraud. Ben Potts of Novidea says that “with the right cloud-based systems in place they (brokers) can help to facilitate more robust governance and compliant systems.”[iii] Potts says that using technology in this way “is the future of broking”.

Simply’s online broker platform launched in May 2019 and has come into its own during lockdown.  Anthony Miller, CEO of Simply, explains, “Traditional life insurers and brokers have struggled during lockdown, with face to face players largely shut for new business. Fortunately, our No-Touch Broker Platform has enabled our brokers to sell Simply Products, which are underwritten by OMART and don’t require medicals or blood tests, remotely in a secure way. They’ve grabbed the opportunity and our monthly broker sales have increased by more than 500%.”

According to Piet Wolmarans of Iemas Insurance Brokers, “By digitising our products and ensuring they co-exist with our face-to-face service, we’ve been able to reach more people and offer them proper financial service and risk protection in a convenient way. This has been invaluable during lockdown, when digital sales have soared as a proportion of our overall business. ”

Miller says COVID-19 has caused “a seismic shift in consumer behaviour in relation to life insurance.  People suddenly see life cover as a must-have rather than a nice to have. And while people want advice from their brokers, they don’t want to meet face to face.  They don’t want to go to a clinic, see a nurse or give blood.  They want reliable life cover, remotely and right now,” he adds.

On the strong growth Simply has experienced since February, Miller says they’ve been in the right place at the right time: “No one could have predicted the Coronavirus pandemic or the impact it would have on digital life insurance.  We’re fortunate to be where the puck is. We’re fully digital and meeting the needs of insurers, brokers and customers alike.”

But there is more to this story than just a temporary uptick in demand for digital insurance solutions.  Experts predict that, post-COVID, the world will change permanently in many ways.  Miller agrees.  “We’re going to see businesses that are well-suited to the new normal do better than ever.  The world is going to be less face-to-face and more remote and online.  In our industry, if you’re digital, if you can adapt quickly, if you can target accurately, the future looks good.  The time for digital life insurance has arrived.”


[i] https://www.placingplatformlimited.com/news/ppl-usage-rise-through-the-lockdown

[ii] https://www.dig-in.com/opinion/are-the-next-big-insurtech-ideas-being-formed-now

[iii] https://coverager.com/covid-19-is-making-the-business-case-for-brokers-to-embrace-change/

Cross your Ts’ and confirm your Cs’ – understanding how your insurance policy affects your loan agreements

When taking out vehicle financing the thought of getting a new ride is such an amazing feeling – the terms and conditions of the financing agreements are often the last thing on your mind. However, down the road these terms and conditions might pose challenges when your circumstances change. Here are a few things to keep in mind when you take out vehicle financing:

Ownership

When you take out a loan on an asset (like a car or a house), that asset is still ‘owned’ by the financial institution you take up the loan with. Until the loan is paid in full it ‘belongs’ to that financial institution.

Insurance

Because the asset is not in your name when you take up a loan for a car, the financial institution that you take up the loan with has to make sure that ‘their’ asset (car) is protected against unforeseen events like an accident. That is why it is compulsory to take up comprehensive car insurance when you buy a car.

Consequences when you cancel your insurance

Over the lock-down period, many consumers are tempted to cancel their insurance due to change in income. However if you cancel your car insurance and then apply for a payment break on your vehicle finance instalment, it could be declined as the asset is no longer insured and pose a risk for the financial institution that you took vehicle finance with (i.e their asset is not covered against the unexpected).

Your options

Instead of cancelling your car insurance during these trying times, here are a few options available to you – speak to your insurance broker about these options:

  1. Limit your vehicle cover (if you are not driving).
  2. Request to remove Value Added Products from your policy such as car hire and or excess waiver etc.
  3. Remove all risk items from your policy.
  • Increase your excess to lower your premium
  • Review insured amounts on all non-motor cover
  • When your circumstances change back to normal (i.e. your income is what it was prior to COVID-19), speak to your insurance broker to re-instate your insurance as comprehensive insurance covers you against in any event.

Speak to your caring partner       

Iemas Insurance Brokers is your caring insurance partner when it comes to all your insurance needs and we can advise you about options available to you – no matter what life throws at you. We can source up to 11 quotations; providing you with insurance cover you can trust and afford. Contact us on 0860 102 383 or visit www.iemasinsurancebrokers.co.za.

Drowning in admin due to lockdown delays? Now you can renew your vehicle licence disc online – quick, safe and hassle-free.

Most of us are all too familiar with that queasy feeling you get at the bottom of your stomach when you think about all the admin that you never seem to get to (or rather want to do). Especially when it comes to annual renewals like you vehicle licence disc. Since lockdown many vehicle licences have expired, however, one can now apply and benefit from the 90 day grace period that was given during lockdown levels 4 and 5.

How do I renew by vehicle licence online?

Click here and follow these easy steps:

Need insurance at the palm of your hand?

Download the Iemas Insurance Brokers app on the App Store (for iPhone) or Google Play (for Android). You can update your details, make a claim, request a quote and more. Contact us on 0860 102 383 or visit www.iemasinsurancebrokers.co.za to find out more about our comprehensive insurance solutions.

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