Crystal ball gazing: what will insurance look like in the future?
Head of Strategy, Product & Data, AA Insurance
I recently signed up for superannuation. I'm sure I'll look back on this one day and remember it was a good decision. I was sitting there the other day, in the bank up on Constellation Drive, and I'm tapping away on the keyboard looking at some imaginary dollar figure that's supposedly going to protect me in the future, come what may.
That's the problem with the future. It's relatively quiet. The future sends no messages back to the present. So, we're left with trying to guess at what the right things are to do today to ensure we are still around tomorrow. This is OK for the little decisions like what to buy for dinner or whether to go on holiday. But what about the big stuff—doing your OE, moving country, choosing a job, getting married, having kids, saving for retirement. How do you know if any of them are going to be the right decision in 10 years?
So, given the future has, as far as I can see, still failed to give us firm indication of its plans, one of the main goals in any business is figuring out how do we protect the company and ensure it survives? We know we need to make good business decisions for tomorrow like hiring the right people, or planning a new marketing campaign.
But what about the big stuff?
From an insurance industry perspective, this may include driverless cars, homes that protect themselves, robo-advice, peer-to-peer insurance, blockchain, Bitcoin, Ethereum, IOT, drones, intelligent homes, robot workers, global workforces, quote aggregators, the sharing economy, micro-rentals, urban intensification, congestion-charging, electric vehicles, and fin-tech.
These are all part of our future but they are part of our insurers’ future too, including AA Insurance. So, would anyone like to tell me which one is sending the strongest message back to the present telling us we ought to pay attention to it?
One thing we know about the future is that it is unpredictable. And so, it is likely that people will always create accidents. Whether it be the captain of the Titanic suggesting his eye test could wait until after the ship got back to shore, or a failure to appreciate just how much someone else’s laptop doesn’t bounce.
Therefore, it is likely we're always going to be liable for something.
Insurance will change—and we’ll need to change with it. Life will always create mishaps regardless of how we cause the damage in future. Maybe you are driving a shared car, spilling coffee on a shared iPad, or sailing a shared ship to New York with 2,000 passengers and a firm belief that icebergs are the stuff of fairy tales. Whatever it is, you're probably going to do something wrong at least once in your life, and need protection if you do.
In a practical sense, we know today some customers are after a very low sum insured on their home’s contents. Merely because what they actually want, is liability cover.
So maybe the future for many customers is about simpler and more flexible liability cover for the many things that could go wrong.
About AA Insurance
AA Insurance is an independently operated, New Zealand-based joint venture between the New Zealand Automobile Association (NZAA) and Suncorp Group. We have demonstrated trusted expertise in home, contents and car insurance in New Zealand since 1994. We underwrite our own policies and sell direct to New Zealanders. Our more than 700 staff look after nearly 375,000 customers with over 710,000 policies.
We proudly partner with Eden Park, support youth charity Blue Light, and have been consistently recognised by: Reader’s Digest Most Trusted Brands (since 2011), NZ Insurance Industry Awards (since 2012), IBM Kenexa Best Workplaces Survey (since 2008), Canstar Blue Most Satisfied Customers (2011-2016), and the Colmar Brunton Corporate Reputation Index (since 2015) that recognises New Zealand’s most successful companies.
For more information please contact:
Nicole Steven, Botica Butler Raudon Partners, (09) 303 3867, 021 025 31886 or email email@example.com
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