We’ve been reflecting a lot on the past and future of UK general insurance this month, prompted by the announcement that Direct Line’s CEO Paul Geddes is to step down after ten years in the role, and also by Consumer Intelligence’s own move to a new office, double the size of the place we have called home for almost a decade.
Here are our top 10 changes in UK general insurance in the last 10 years:
- People started buying insurance in return for a cuddly meerkat.
- In 2009, CompareTheMarket (CTM) was the Price Comparison Website (PCW) consumers were least likely to visit. Now CTM has the largest market share with over 40% of consumers using their site to look for new quotes at renewal.
- The brand merry-go-round saw the departure of RBSI, Cornhill and Norwich Union and the launch of Direct Line Group, Allianz Direct and Aviva.
- Drones are now used for risk assessment, surveying the scenes of global catastrophic weather events.
- The Competition and Markets Authority banned wide Most Favoured Nation (MFN) clauses, opening the door for insurers to offer different prices across different PCWs.
- The EU banned insurers from taking gender into consideration as a rating factor in 2012. Women saw their premiums rise. But with men tending to drive more expensive cars, they still pay more for their car insurance.
- A rise in policies with no call-centre support for sales and mid-term adjustments. It’s given consumers more choice in how they access insurance and interact with their providers, and has also presented brands with a challenge to create a consistent omni-channel experience.
- Regulation of insurance brands changed from the disbanded FSA to the FCA, which has been very focused on customer outcomes, launching a number of thematic reviews and requiring changes such as its renewal pricing transparency legislation.
- Telematics policies launched and gained traction, now accounting for over a million of in force policies through brokers alone.
- 10 years ago, the Ogden discount rate was sitting at 2.5%. The unprecedented overnight shift to -0.75% caused the biggest pricing leap on record. Millions were knocked off profit margins to ensure personal injury reserves were sufficient to meet the new expected pay-out levels.
Identifying future trends and planning for them
Consumer Intelligence is already helping some of the UK’s leading insurance brands with horizon scanning with its unique approach and insight. In these times of extraordinary change being forewarned is forearmed has never been more relevant. Isn’t it time you looked to the future with Consumer Intelligence?
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