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Customer survey shows preference for intermediated advice – better delivery on client expectations

The South African Customer Satisfaction Index (SA-csi) is an independent national benchmark of customer satisfaction of the quality of products and services available to household consumers in South Africa. The recently released SA-csi for short-term insurance provides highly scientific insights into the overall level of satisfaction of customers of South Africa’s short-term insurers.

Interestingly the latest index also differentiates between direct and intermediated (broker-driven) insurers. The 2019 SA-csi for short-term insurance polled almost 4300 consumers of short-term insurers during the second half of 2019 across various brands.

The benchmark indicates that only a handful of providers meet and exceeds customer expectations, while the biggest gap is found around the reliability of the offering. In other words, did the cover perform to what I expected when things went wrong? Overall, intermediated insurance brands performed better than direct insurers in meeting and exceeding customer expectations – this is put down to the importance of the advice process and helping customers understand exactly what they are covered for – and not covered for – and managing customer expectations at inception of cover and not at claims time.

Key Driver Analysis

The research shows that customers rate peace of mind, reliability, and empathy and adviser product knowledge as the four most important considerations when it comes to rating their insurers. It is interesting to note that the first two drivers – peace of mind and keeping promises – are trust-driven and make up 40% of the total scores.

On the top four drivers for direct insurers, Virseker and OUTsurance lead on all four measures.
On intermediated insurers, Old Mutual Insure stands out as the leader on all four top measures, followed by Hollard and Santam. Hollard’s strong recovery has seen it overtake Santam on all four key drivers. “Trust and peace of mind remain key drivers of customer satisfaction in the insurance sector, yet we are still seeing a number of players dropping the ball on these fundamental drivers. There is still a disjoint between customer expectations and actual deliverables. What the 2019 SA-csi results however do clearly indicate is that three key players are investing strongly in customer experience across the insurance value chain – Old Mutual Insure, OUTsurance and Hollard which made a powerful comeback after a tough few years,” Ineke Prinsloo, Head of Customer Insights at Consulta explains.

No doubt, this year’s results will be very interesting in the light of how insurers handled the impact of Covid-19.

Click here to read more about the key take-outs of the 2019 SA-csi for short-term insurers.

Click here to view an infographic that captures the results.

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