It’s no secret that Joshua Scutts (pictured) is one of the rising stars of the Australian insurance industry. Just four years into his insurance career, the principal at Shielded Insurance Brokers picked up both Australian Young Gun of the Year and Young Gun of the Year – Independent (1-19 Staff) at the Insurance Business Australia Awards.
For Scutts, the awards provide him with further evidence that his strategy of “working hard but smart” is paying off. “At Shielded, we’ve got a fairly young team here and, like me, they’ve all got a burning desire to succeed at what they do,” he told Insurance Business. “It’s something that we really hire on, as I like to be surrounded by these kinds of people motivated both internally and by a common goal.”
With a background in online marketing and technology, Scutts understands that the days of pen and paper insurance are fading away, particularly with the digitalisation brought about by the pandemic.
“For us, our success comes from respecting our customers, listening to what they want, and from selling in a smart way,” he noted. “Our technology stack, which has been developed in-house, allows us to measure and track the customer’s entire journey, from lead acquisition through to the bind email going out to the client, all within one system. By talking to our customers day in, day out, and by measuring and integrating the feedback that we get from them, we’re able to use technology to deliver them optimised products faster.”
Digital technology isn’t just powering the customer experience at Shielded either – according to Scutts, it’s also responsible for performing some of the more mundane data entry tasks so that their team can focus their energy on meeting clients’ needs.
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Looking forward, Scutts sees plenty of avenues for growth for Shielded, telling Insurance Business that he’d like to expand its workforce – currently sitting at 31 – to at least 50. If the company continues to grow at the pace it has in recent times, this expansion shouldn’t be too far away – despite the pandemic, Shielded still recorded an incredible 91% client growth rate from July 2019 to June 2020, with $3.2 million of new revenue over this period.
“One of the opportunities that we’re just sinking our teeth into, and where we think there’s a lot of room for growth, is the SME market,” Scutts said. “It’s an area with incredible potential for our business because we’re able to conduct transactions quickly while still providing advice along the way. If customers are buying online, they might be getting good prices but they’re often in the dark when it comes to what, exactly, they’re purchasing, and that’s where Shielded can really add value.”