How well are carriers meeting the needs of brokers – and where do they have room to improve? To find out, Insurance Business Canada polled hundreds of insurance brokers from across the country. Brokers were asked to rate their carriers on a scale of 1 (poor) to 10 (excellent) across a range of criteria, from underwriting expertise and claims service to competitive rates and product range.
When asked about the three most important things they look for in a carrier partner, brokers named claims processing, communication and responsiveness, and competitive rates. Of these, only rates made the top three last year, yet the category dropped markedly in importance – 71% of brokers named competitive rates among their top three criteria when selecting a carrier in 2018, yet only 59% put it among the top three this year. Claims processing, meanwhile, nearly doubled in importance: Only 34% of brokers ranked it among their top three criteria last year, compared to 59% this year.
In terms of performance, carriers increased their average scores across every single category this year; the most notable jumps came in product training and marketing support and carriers’ commitment to the broker channel. The number of carriers that achieved five-star ratings (earning a score of 8.0 or higher in at least one category) tells a different story, however. Just 16 carriers achieved five-star ratings this year, down from 17 last year and 21 in 2017. In addition, while three carriers earned five-star ratings in every single category last year, not a single carrier received that distinction this year.