Fifty-eight percent of insured small to medium enterprises use a broker to help save them valuable time and resources, according to Vero.
This follows research published by Vero which revealed that one in four SME owners have no business insurance. Cost and a lack of perceived benefits were cited as the main reasons; however, time pressure was also a major factor, with the majority stating that they do everything on their own, and have little time for themselves or their family.
Speaking to Insurance Business, Suncorp New Zealand’s executive general manager of customer marketplace Campbell Mitchell says that for a business, developing a relationship with a broker will take off a lot of pressure and is key to ensuring that the most important business risks are covered.
“Time is a huge concern for SME customers, so it’s a great opportunity for brokers to really demonstrate what they can do,” says Mitchell. “But we know that SME customers also value control and some will want more of a partnership relationship, rather than brokers just doing everything for them. The real value that brokers can offer SMEs is to give them more personalised advice about the risks their business faces and to help them tailor a package of insurance that suits their risks and their budget.
According to Mitchell, similar research in Australia has demonstrated that insurance behaviours are now shifting, and that SMEs are more open to trying out different insurance arrangements. He says it is prime time for brokers to utilise such findings to further understand the SME market, partner with businesses and add value where it is desperately needed.
“We know that not every business can afford every type of insurance,” Mitchell continues. “But some of the top concerns businesses identified were insurable risks like natural disasters, or being unable to trade for a long period of time. A broker can help customers understand which risks are likely to have the biggest impact to their business and ensure they protect against those.
“After we released the first Vero SME Index last year we surveyed 250 brokers to see how they valued it,” Mitchell says. “It was encouraging to see that 21% had used the insights to help them attract new clients. We hope even more brokers this year use the insights to tailor their offering more for SMEs.”