Jumping the Hurdles: 4 Challenges Facing Insurance Brokers in 2018
We’re fast approaching the second half of 2018, and what a year it’s been already! From political upheaval and preparing for Brexit, to a royal wedding and a BitCoin learning curve, it’s been an exciting six months.
For insurance brokers, however, the first half of the year has also seen industry-specific challenges coming to the fore. With six more months to go, these could very well be the hurdles brokers find themselves working to overcome before 2019:
1. Self-Driving Cars
Yes, self-driving cars are still in the spotlight. In fact, as we get ever-closer to the day we see them on our roads for real, it’s becoming clear that they won’t stop being talked about for a very long time.
As we’ve discussed before on the Lunar CRM blog, insurers have been navigating the choppy waters of self-driving cars in preparation for their launch, with many calling on the government to cement particular ideas – such as who is to blame in an accident.
With consumer trust in self-driving vehicles tumbling following some less-than-successful trials in the US, and many insurers appearing unprepared for the future, confidence needs to be restored for the sake of stability.
2. Rising Prices
A huge challenge for brokers of late has been the continual increase in the cost of car insurance. This has posed so much of a challenge that insurers have actively petitioned the government to deal with the situation.
The difficulty in these rising costs comes from explaining to customers why they’re suddenly obliged to pay more, especially when there are comparison sites which will provide cheaper – though not necessarily ‘equal’ – cover options.
This has become particularly problematic in Ireland, where premiums have seen a 30% rise and 75% of consumers were vocally concerned about rising prices.
Staying compliant is always important, but in 2018 we saw the introduction of GDPR, which has already hammered home the need to protect customer data and maintain compliance. Although small businesses have been reassured that they won’t be made an example of, the rest of 2018 may mean playing it safe and ensuring that all data practices are above board.
Of course, in the world of insurance, compliance goes beyond data protection, with legal obligations to consider. Many brokers may consider a change in systems during the second half of the year, searching for a solution which will both protect their customer data and keep their operations compliant.
4. Skills Shortages
Finally, a challenge which has been slowly creeping its way throughout different industries: skills shortages. The Chartered Insurance Institute’s recent survey found 81% of insurance brokers were affected by a shortage in technical skills, an increase of 22% from 2016.
There are many potential reasons for the skills gap: the rise in technology, changes to the modern-day career path, and challenges surrounding Brexit. Whilst an exact cause is difficult to discern, one thing is for certain: 2018 is the time to start grooming a new generation of skilled brokers to weather whatever storm lies ahead.