One of Australia’s top brokers has urged others to make things simple and easy-to-understand, saying it’s one of the most valuable services they can provide to their clients.
“We use insurance terminology every day of the week, so it all makes sense, but I think we forget the people we’re dealing with don’t know what they’ve got a lot of the time,” says Michael Stewart, director of Stewart Insurance Group.
“Whether it’s a car, or a boat, or a business, they tend to just look at the dollar amount and accept it if it looks about right – they don’t always go any deeper than that.”
Stewart, who launched his own brokerage back in 2008, says one of the most effective ways to simplify things for clients is to improve the presentation of their policies.
“There’s a lot to be said about presentation, it really is so important,” he tells Insurance Business.
In fact, when a prospective customer shared a renewal notice with Stewart recently, the first thing he did was overhaul the document so the client could get a better understanding of the coverage he really had.
“I had to cut and paste it into a word document, add spaces in between paragraphs, then try to work out what it was saying because it was literally just a slab of writing which all ran into itself,” he said. “It was just pages and pages of what seems like nonsense, with curly questions and conditions and clauses thrown in there, which made it almost impossible to read.”
Once he’d trimmed it down into a one-page, easily-digestible document, Stewart sent it back to the customer, who was surprised by what the policy was really offering.
“It was completely the opposite of what they were hoping to find,” says Stewart. “But in doing that, I was able to explain everything to the client, present it to them simply, talk them through it, and save them 20% – I also upsold them on things they didn’t realise they were missing.”
Throughout all communication with his clients, Stewart says keeping it simple is his key rule.
“At the end of the day, you’ve got your compliance, you need to give them policy documents and schedules, but they never look at it – they absolutely don’t see it,” he says. “But if you can present a simple document before all that technical stuff, something they can look at and understand, that’s where you’re really delivering extra value.”