One of the biggest highlights for Travis Atkinson 18 months down the track of stepping into the EGM NZI
role is finally completing the massive job of combining the company with Lumley
“My highlight of the year so far has been not using the word ‘integration’” he joked.
“As you can imagine it was a complex and challenging process but I’m really excited about the strength of the business we’re taking into 2016.
“We’ve brought two companies together and now our focus is external again.
“That means we’re getting on with our core business, which is working with brokers to help them deliver even better service for their customers, and providing better products for them to sell.”
Atkinson said the company’s burning issue was always around finding ways to help brokers work better which had two aspects to it.
“Part of it is around processes and making sure we remain close to brokers, fast to respond and flexible to their changing needs.
“The insurance broker model is all about service to the end customer and we know that we’re a vital link in the broker’s ability to serve their customers.”
The other great challenge was working out how the company should change to match the changing world.
“As the world changes so do the insurance needs of New Zealand businesses and so our challenge is to look at customers’ changing needs and deliver for them.
“The liability space is one place where we’re doing that at the moment.”
He said legislative changes like the new Health and Safety regulations had added to the importance of liability insurance for businesses.
“We’ve put together a new team led by Ryan Clark
and begun to update and expand our product offerings.
“I’m very excited about the launch of NZI
Liability Cyber Ultra and Cyber Base, two brand new NZI
liability products designed to meet the growing demand from our customers for protection from cyber attacks and data breaches.”
He added: “We’ll be continuing to take this approach across the business. We want to have the best product in every area and deliver the best service to brokers every time.”
More broadly across the industry, Atkinson said the challenge was keeping the insurance model relevant.
This was getting harder since customer demand and technology was threatening the status quo.
“Helping insurance remain relevant to me is about getting closer to the customer and focusing on their needs and not what we think they should have.
“A lot of what we do hasn’t changed in many years.”
However as the world was changing, so was the cover it needed, he said.
“Increasingly we will have to adapt and evolve to ensure we keep pace with, and if fact be ahead of, the coming trends.”
Atkinson hinted at what was to come, now that he’d got the ‘best team in the industry’ in place.
“There’s lots going on. Our focus is on providing outstanding broker experiences in dealing with us and there’s lots to come in this area.
“We’ve also got lots in store, product and technology-wise.”
He said: “One specific area is the opportunity that we have to create value from harnessing the information and insights that we have.
“This is a major focus within NZI
and one that I’m sure will bring great benefit to our brokers and their customers over time.”