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‘Add-ons don’t need to be an afterthought’, says David Haynes of ARAG

‘Add-ons don’t need to be an afterthought’, says David Haynes of ARAG

‘Add-ons don’t need to be an afterthought’, says David Haynes of ARAG
Brokers have an opportunity to drive revenue by offering high-quality add-ons to their standard packages, according to David Haynes from Bristol-based ARAG.

Haynes, the firm’s head of underwriting and marketing, says brokers are starting to wake up to the opportunities ARAG’s legal protection packages offer them and their clients. “We’ve been around for 10 years and brokers have become open to discussions with us,” he said. “They realise that with the whole regulatory piece going on, with the FCA making sure clients are made aware of what they can buy, brokers now feel they’re under an obligation to offer these products and make sure they’re aware of the value, and there is great value in them. So I think we are gradually getting there.”

ARAG has developed its business, split almost equally between before-the-event and after-the-event products, by being firmly focused on the needs of its customers, and the needs of its customers’ customers. Haynes told Insurance Business: “When we started we sat down with a blank sheet and decided we wanted to be best of breed. We looked at all of the other products and asked how we could be better, how could we give the broker the confidence that our policy was the best available. We’re not always going to be the cheapest, I’d sometimes worry if we were the cheapest, it’s about the value and the product and the broker has to be absolutely certain that the product they’ve got meets their needs and the needs of their client.

“It’s about understanding needs – find out who the broker is, find out what clients they deal with, what their needs are then make sure the product you offer meets their needs. It has to be specific to the client, we have very few products that are exactly the same – we have a commercial product but it’s then tailored to meet the needs of a specific industry.”

The kind of legal cover that once may have been little more than a footnote to a policy now represents a real opportunity for brokers to develop their client relationships by offering genuinely useful cover, said Haynes.

“More and more brokers are saying ‘come and tell us what you can do for us, come and give us the right product,” he said. “It’s profitable to the broker, and he’s selling a product which his client is going to get some value out of. We do legal advice, legal documents the client can download to chase debts or deal with employment contracts, it gives them letters, they’ve got access to 24-hour legal advice, so even if they make no claim they’ve still got value from the product.”