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Category: Blog

How has online shopping affected insurance?

Today, digital technology offers clear advantages in the online shopping experience, but for the insurance market, it seems difficult to replace the value of broker support when offering a complex product so tailored to customer needs. So, how will insurance companies ensure clients get the right policies if they buy online?

It is not new that customers from different generations are making insurance purchase decisions using online tools to search for information, regardless of the final purchase method.

Gen Zers, on the other hand, prefer to do most shopping online when they can out of convenience. Factors such as brand familiarity, refundability and product knowledge seem to influence online purchase of this generation.

Gen Z insurance clients are often first-time insurance buyers, so will experience calls geared towards professional advice to supplement digital marketing or product education tools.


What to know about getting a reduced car insurance rate.

While private auto insurers are regulated by the government, they are not mandated to provide a certain level of relief during the pandemic.

There’s no uniform approach with private insurers, so they could be classified into one of three groups: those who aren’t offering any relief; those leaving it up to the consumer to contact them to obtain a discount; and those who are “proactively” giving blanket reductions to all their policyholders, regardless of whether they are driving less or not.

In addition to discounts, some insurance companies are also offering flexible payment options to customers who are struggling financially amid the pandemic and might be late with a payment or are not able to make payments.

Of note, people who have completely stopped driving in the middle of the pandemic also have the option of removing their coverage completely, keeping in mind that even in an emergency situation, they will not be able to use their car.

You can find a compiled list of car insurance companies offering COVID-19 relief and the details of those measures through Contact your broker or agent to find out how you may be affected by this.


Northwest Territories Approves Electronic Proof of Auto Insurance.

The Centre for Study of Insurance Operations (CSIO) has approved effective immediately the Northwest Territories to now use electronic proof of auto insurance, also called eSlips.

This solution allows insurance providers across Canada to send attachments and eSlips to personal and commercial customers through secure email, using a consistent look and feel, regardless of sender. Electronic documents may be delivered through smart phones, apps, emails or tablets without having to carry the paper copy.

CSIO launched My Proof of Insurance in February 2018 in order to provide the industry with a modern method of delivering digital proof of auto insurance and policy documents.

Northwest Territories joins a growing number of jurisdictions, including Nova Scotia, Alberta, Ontario, Quebec and Newfoundland and Labrador in allowing consumers the option of using eSlips.

To find out more, contact your insurance agent or broker.


Are your commercial clients budgeting for a hard market?

Since Canadian Underwriter first raised the issue of commercial insurance rate increases at the Top Broker Summit last November, experts in the field have been giving their views on the main challenges ahead for the industry.

Albert Benmichol, the CEO of Axis Capital Holdings Ltd., expects the hard market to persist. During an earnings call this past July he stated that “even with the increases that we have seen in the last two years, many lines of business are still not at acceptable pricing.”

At the Top Broker Summit, panelists were asked when they believe the hard market will end. Carol Jardine, president of Canadian property and casualty operations at Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Company, responded “unfortunately for customers I think it’s got a long run.”

Experts agree that the key to success in 2020 will be discussing and understanding the client’s perspective, while still getting the rate they need for their shareholders.


Cyber leads global business risks for the first time

In the digital era, corporate data has become a key competitive asset. As a result, cybersecurity threats pose new global business risks.

For the first time ever, the Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty annual survey on global business risks ranked cyber incidents as the most important business risk in the world. Business interruption and changes in legislation and regulation ranked second and third, respectively.

Seven years ago, cyber ranked 15th with just 6% of responses, but today cyber incidents have become a major expense for businesses, resulting in costly lawsuits and litigation.

Climate change has also risen to its highest-ever position on the Allianz Risk Barometer. This is the result of concerns about increasing physical losses caused by rising seas, droughts, storms and flooding. 



Why you shouldn’t go outside the industry to find talent

There are many reasons to look for talent within your own organization before looking externally,  according to Tomas Chamorro-Prezmuzic, the chief talent scientist at ManpowerGroup, and Jonathan Kirschner, CEO of AIIR Consulting. In their blog for Harvard Business Review, According to Chamorro-Prezmuzic and Kirschner, internal hires adapt quicker because they are better able to understand the culture and politics of the organization. They are also more likely to be loyal and committed to their company, resulting in a lower staff turnover.

Chamorro-Prezmuzic and Kirschner also provide several science-based recommendations to help organizations update their hiring techniques. These recommendations include thinking ahead, focusing on the right traits for the role, and thinking inclusively. According to the authors, “the most important part of this process is to never stop thinking about your employees’ potential and talent,” which they consider key to creating a high-performing team.


Which technologies bring the most value to the industry supply chain?

Process automation, artificial intelligence, and blockchain innovations are making insurance processes more efficient. They are also making  insurance more affordable and accessible.

Insurance technology is a growing field, and we will see certain technologies rising over the years. Insurance companies are expanding their data sources to include social media and satellite imagery. We will also see more transparency around risk on personal lines and supply chain insurance thanks to distributed ledger technology.

There are two notable advancements on the blockchain front. The first is a pilot project that simplifies complicated insurance policies. The second is the marine industry’s decision to adopt Insurwave, a blockchain platform, to support marine hull insurance.

Despite these advances, there are still some roadblocks hindering the widespread adoption of insurtech. These include the sheer volume of companies, their capabilities, and the unique value-adds that they’re toting.


Biggest insurance losses in 2019

Last year, insured damage from severe weather events reached $1.3 billion. According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, no single event in 2019 caused the high amount paid out for losses. Instead, they claim that the high-cost losses are a result of several smaller severe weather events across Canada rather than one devastating weather event.

In October 2019, a Halloween storm caused severe wind and water damage across Ontario and Quebec. At $250 million, it was the most costly weather event for insurers. The storm hit the Niagara region and Montreal hardest, and these areas suffered the most damage.

Flooding in Quebec and New Brunswick in April and May of 2019 was the second-most costly weather event, resulting in $208 million in insured damage. The flooding was caused by high water levels from snowmelt and rain on the Ottawa and Saint John rivers.

The hail storms that hit Western Canada in July and August were the third costliest weather event of 2019, costing $181 million.



IBC reveals list of most frequently stolen vehicles in Canada

Auto theft continues to be an issue in Canada with car thieves becoming more technologically capable than ever before. According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada’s annual list of most frequently stolen vehicles, car thieves now rely on technology to bypass vehicle security systems. The increasing amount of vehicles with keyless entry fobs has increased electronic auto theft, as thieves are able to evade these security systems.

According to this year’s list of the top 10 most stolen vehicles in Canada, Ford trucks with a pre-2007 model year make up the majority of the list. These vehicles do not have ignition immobilizers, which prevent hotwiring. The Insurance Bureau of Canada also states in its report that auto theft costs Canadians approximately $1 billion each year, which includes the $542 million that insurers pay to fix or replace stolen vehicles.

For further information on how your vehicles ranks, contact your insurance representatives.


Driver assist technology: is it really just another distraction?

Vehicle assist technology may actually be contributing to distracted driving but it may just be a short-term trend. Desjardins insurance conducted a national survey and found that 63% of respondents feel that vehicle safety technology can contribute to distracted driving and over 80% of respondents believe that more education is needed on how to use new safety features.

The potential for increased collisions as a result of vehicle assist technology will directly impact insurance providers. Since new safety features like the rear-view camera are no longer reserved for high-end vehicles, safety technologies are linked to increasing claims costs and car repair costs for insurance companies.

Desjardins claims that with improved driver assist technology in cars, people are having too much confidence in safety features and becoming less aware of their surroundings. According to the Vice President of claims at Desjardins, it is difficult to evaluate the exact number of collisions due to vehicle assist technology but insurance providers should be aware of this concern.