Welcome to iLeads Insurance Market Minute, where we bring you the latest, most relevant news regarding the insurance market. Last week you were reading Insurer OKs Cryptocurrency For Premium Payments. This week we’re bringing you:
Fixing the most common pain point in workers’ comp claims*
Injured workers typically have little to no prior experience with workers’ compensation claims. When their employer files a claim on their behalf, many have concerns around how their medical care will be managed, who will pay for that care, and how any medical leave might impact their wages or employment status, among other things.
“One of most common pain points in workers’ compensation claims is communication,” said Brent Bland, senior vice president and head of workers’ compensation claims, AmTrust Financial Services. “There’s a general lack of understanding among injured workers of how the workers’ compensation claims process works. I think one of the biggest challenges for our industry is in the area of communication and helping people understand from the very beginning what workers’ compensation is intended to cover and what help they should expect to receive if they suffer an on-the-job injury.”
Communication is never a one and done thing. While it’s important for insurers to help injured workers to understand at the onset of a claim what benefits they’re entitled to under workers’ compensation, it’s equally (if not more) important for insurers to keep the lines of communication open and be engaged throughout the lifecycle of the claim in order to alleviate any concerns that may arise.
Hot Housing Market Boosts Personal Lines Insurance Shopping But Auto Still Lags*
Shopping for personal lines insurance is showing signs of returning to pre-pandemic levels in the U.S., according to a new TransUnion report. Auto insurance remains a big exception, however.
The consulting firm found in its Personal Lines Insurance Shopping Report that the three-week moving average for shopping in this sector rose 24.6 percent the week of March 28, 2021 compared to the previous year. Much of the increase stemmed from the fact that March 2020 marked the beginning of many state lockdowns, but there was at least one other large increase during the 2021 first quarter. Trans Union tracked a 26 percent year-over-year increase during the week of Jan. 3, 2021.
The personal lines insurance marketplace rebound was due to a number of factors, TransUnion said, including big growth in mortgage originations and consumers emerging from the pandemic with plenty of money to spend, and a resulting growing need to cover homes and valuable belongings.
“Low interest rates, a work from home posture, and a race for space fueled the hot housing market and the likely increase in property insurance shopping,” Mark McElroy, executive vice president and head of TransUnion’s insurance business, said.
Auto insurance was a different story. While auto insurance shopping rose 14 percent during the week of March 28, 2021, auto insurance shopping rates have either declined or nudged just slightly higher for much of the 2021 first quarter, according to TransUnion.
“Based on our latest data, we expect that positive year-over-year trends will continue for personal lines insurance shopping as the economy continues to emerge from the pandemic,” McElroy said. “Price continues to be the main driver of auto insurance shoppers. For property insurance shoppers however, better coverage is the main driver, perhaps owing to the fact they are in a better financial position at this point in the recovery.”
Is the future of working in insurance about to change?*
Jérôme Itty knows all too well the challenges of onboarding new hires in a remote work environment.
“I’ve experienced it myself,” said AXA XL’s chief operating officer in the Americas.
“I joined this company a year ago, I was appointed COO of the Americas, and I worked from my bedroom in Paris. I wasn’t able to meet with my colleagues, I wasn’t able to sit down with them and create this trust with them. It was a big challenge for me. So, I can understand for more junior people joining the organization, how you get onboarded and trusted as a team member can be a big challenge.”
Speaking at Reuters’ The Future of Insurance Conference, Itty told his virtual audience about his organization’s smart working initiative, something that more than 70% of AXA employees will adopt this year with the goal of all employees being on board by 2023.
Essentially, smart working is a hybrid way of working, one that combines remote work and an office presence. While it will not preclude eligible colleagues from working in an office full-time if that’s what they want, it recognizes that many of AXA’s employees have expressed the desire to choose what their workday looks like and to find a balance that works for them.
Itty – who is overseeing the implementation of AXA’s smart working strategy in the US, Canada, Bermuda and Latin America — says his organization was already moving in this direction before the pandemic, with pilot projects in France and Belgium offering up some valuable lessons for the company to roll out globally to its workforce of roughly 10,000 people (with one-fourth of that in the Americas, including 30 cities across the US).
And when the pandemic hit and it forced everyone to work remotely (not just the 38% of the workforce that worked remotely before the pandemic), Itty said it greatly accelerated the company’s transition to the more hybrid approach.
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