Insurance industry weathers natural disasters
Australia's east coast has endured another Summer of extreme weather, but this time the insurance industry was prepared. We speak to Matt Pearson of Vero about how insurance businesses are getting better at responding to natural disasters.
Video transcript below:
Donna Sawyer, Insurance Business Online
Donna Sawyer: The east coast of Australia has again been ravaged by fires and floods this summer in another blow to insurance businesses. But Matt Pearson of Vero says the industry was better prepared this time round and lessons have been learnt.
Matt Pearson, Vero
Matt Pearson: I think through practice the industry has really become good at this. Suncorp wrote a white paper on this last year and I think the real keys to the response is around having a plan. So you’ve really got to be able to have a plan that you can invoke quickly. The key is how you can, how you respond to a large increase in work in a very short period of time. So you have really got to be able to flex your workforce and adapt your processes to be able to cope with that.
Donna Sawyer: It’s just not the bottomline that takes a hit when natural disasters strike, it’s the insurance industry’s reputation. Matt Pearson says more can be done on the PR front.
Matt Pearson: There are hundreds of good news stories every day out there and I think the media, part of their role is to focus on you know on the negative side of things, what we need to do more is talk about the positives. For every of sort of one claim that goes wrong, there is hundreds that go absolutely right and I think it’s really incumbent upon all of us to really highlight and talk about those good news story and the contribution that we make to the economy overall. Insurance is an essential service and business and life couldn’t really get on without it.
Donna Sawyer: He says the benefits of mitigation are clear and that’s a job for the experts.
Matt Pearson: I think our role to play in working with government is, our expertise is really around with selection. So we know what the high risk areas are, but certainly building mitigation that’s not our speciality, that should be really left to government and specialists in the infrastructure building.
Donna Sawyer: This is Donna Sawyer reporting for Insurance Business Online.