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Claims handling bucks falling protection product satisfaction levels

11 March 2019

Satisfaction with claims handling has risen but overall, the protection sector should focus on the level of service it provides, Defaqto has warned, after the results of its latest protection service review revealed that industry satisfaction levels fell in 2018.

The financial information business said that satisfaction levels were lower than in 2017, with the exception of claims handling and administration which rose by 4% to 57% in 2018 and new business processing which remained steady at 80%. On average however, all other categories slipped by 2% in satisfaction levels.

Worst affected were underwriting services and technical assistance, which Defaqto said may be a result of teething problems as insurers seek to deliver intermediary protection business via technology platforms.

David Cartwright, head of insight and consulting for wealth and protection, Defaqto, said: “Conversely, underwriting services and claims handling and administration are ranked in the top three for importance, but the performance is below par. The message for the protection sector is that more attention needs to be given to these areas to improve satisfaction.

“With many providers offering similar products, service is a key deciding factor for advisers when it comes to product selection.”

The survey also found that advisers were recommending on average 5.4 individual products in 2017 but this figure fell to 5.3 last year. Products proving more popular included mortgage payment protection insurance and decreasing term assurance, suggesting a renewed interest in mortgage-related sales among advisers. In contrast, there was a marked decrease in support for underwritten whole of life.

As a new addition to this year’s survey, Defaqto also asked advisers if there was any interest in pre-paid funeral plans. Only 9% of respondents said they would recommend pre-paid funeral plans.

 

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