As many brokers can attest, the Professional Indemnity (PI) market has endured challenging conditions in recent months. While the hardening market and changes to the risk appetite of some insurers have kept many on their toes.
PI is an essential (and in some cases mandatory) form of cover for many clients, especially for businesses that provide advice or services. Without it, many SMEs would fold under the financial weight of a PI-related claim.
Gemma Hicks, Business Development Manager for SME broker platform BizCover for Brokers (B4B) and a former broker herself, believes there are some things we can do to assist brokers in these challenging times.
Hicks says Insurtechs can facilitate brokers when choosing a PI policy by making it easy to access markets to compare cover and premiums and to provide excellent and responsive service.
“The insurer and broker are both there to help clients get suitable coverage. Facilitating insurers to deliver on what brokers need to service their clients can only make the process of getting suitable PI coverage for their clients easier.”
Insurer responsiveness and a streamlined quoting process
The recent market conditions have influenced the industry, with many brokers experiencing a drop in responsiveness from insurers.
This is a common gripe among brokers, and it can sometimes mean the difference between going with one insurer over another.
“As a former broker myself, insurer responsiveness of insurers was extremely important as it can be the make or break of retaining a client and delivering a high level of service,” says Hicks.
This problem is made worse by inefficient quoting processes that often leave brokers waiting on multiple fronts at the same time.
Hicks says that brokers that use the B4B platform don’t have these problems as you can select multiple quotes from multiple insurers and bind instantly.
“It’s a full policy lifecycle management platform supported by a team you can communicate by phone, webchat or email so the probability of getting an instant quote through us for your clients is high,” says Hicks.
“Last year, for example, we quoted more than 97% of all consultant submissions we received.”
On top of that, BizCover for Brokers has Service Level Agreements (SLAs) in place with its insurers that help ensure responsiveness is achieved.
“If someone asks a question that falls outside of our platform we can refer it to the insurer, and expect a response within 24 hours,” Hicks says.
“Our real-time response within our Australian Customer Care team helps ensure a quick turn-around for brokers’ queries and can be contacted easily across multiple channels.”
Underwriting Expertise & Broad Appetites
The experience and market knowledge of underwriters is also paramount when choosing a suitable PI policy, as it is the underwriters that ensure the policy is not too loose or too stingy.
Hicks says the PI offering through the B4B platform has been specifically designed with these considerations in mind.
“We have four leading insurers – AIG, Dual, QBE, and Vero – who brokers can choose from for their PI policies,” she said.
An insurer’s risk appetite, which is reflected in the policy coverage, is another category that brokers prioritise when picking a PI policy, says Hicks. This is especially the case during a hard market where insurers are less willing to negotiate terms.
“Brokers understand the rising uncertainty and risks that insurers must contend with in the current market. However, what they also want is choice – Insurtechs like B4B can deliver them that.”
This is because the SME policy comparison site is designed to promote contestability among multiple insurers providing complete transparency and instant choice.
PI has been a tough insurance line to crack in recent years, and the industry – and its customers – can only benefit by understanding what each other prioritise. Insurtechs like BizCover for Brokers can help insurers meet these priorities, which can only improve their relationship with brokers going forward.
*The information in this article is general only and should not be relied upon as advice. BizCover for Brokers is a registered business name of BizCover Pty Ltd (ABN 68 127 707 975; AFSL 501769).