Karen Scott, Head of Insight at market research and consultancy firm Research In Finance, reflects on the critical need to listen to consumers, and highlights the results of the Global Consumer Insurance Insights survey that surprised her the most.
Karen Scott and the team of financial services experts at Research in Finance regularly conduct market research on a variety of topics for companies in the global financial sector.
They conducted the survey of 2,000 global consumers that resulted in the Duck Creek Technologies Global Consumer Insurance Insights whitepaper. The findings and analysis resulting from this survey created strong impact and media attention.
In addition, the intelligence provided clear calls to action for the insurance sector to engage with and listen to consumers, alongside a need to remain agile from a technology perspective by focusing on modern low code core systems with an ‘evergreen’ approach built into their architecture to enhance the experience and outcomes for customers.
Duck Creek Technologies caught up with Karen to discuss why the whitepaper had such an impact, and what surprised her most about the findings.
Why do you think it’s important that insurance companies listen directly to what consumers want? Couldn’t they just look at wider buying trends / what their competitors are doing?
Karen Scott: “Businesses that ignore the views of their customers/consumers do so at their peril. Ultimately it is the consumer who buys the policy/insurance product (even if this comes on the back of advice), and primary research that captures their changing behaviors and needs as well as user feedback and satisfaction should be informing insurance company strategies, new product development, marketing and communications plans.
There is no point offering a new product enhancement if there is no customer demand for it!
And at the same time, simply following what competitors are doing, does not mean consumers will buy (or need) the same offering from you. Maybe the other company has a wider reach than your company or a different reputation, or just an alternative operating model and can afford to provide say longer opening hours on their customer service helplines or a special pricing offer.
Who wants to be a follower anyway?”
What is the value of this survey being independently conducted by Research in Finance on behalf of Duck Creek Technologies?
Karen Scott: “Duck Creek contacted Research in Finance, a market leading independent market research consultancy specializing in financial services undertaking studies all around the world.
We believe our in-depth knowledge makes us an invaluable partner to any business working in the financial services sector. We adhere to the Market Research Society Guidelines which means that Duck Creek can be confident that the findings from this study provide a representative view of consumers in the markets we are targeting and have been professionally gathered and analyzed, ensuring that no bias has crept in. It can be challenging for individual businesses to gain this kind of feedback, to decide who to target for a survey, and to conduct research without conscious or unconscious bias.
Conducting research independently and to a professional standard in this way also helps the media to see the newsworthiness of the results – these are the real views of consumers, and therefore have clear value in terms of the direction of travel for the market as a whole. Having an external, independent, experienced organization undertaking market research is also an endorsement of the caliber and weight of the findings.”
Which finding surprised you most?
Karen Scott: “I found the regional differences fascinating as the data clearly shows how respondents from the different nationalities engage and interact (and the relationship they have) with their insurance provider.
The input I found most surprising was for the two ‘care’ statements. The question asked respondents to what degree they agree or disagree with two statements – ‘My insurance company treats me as an individual’ and ‘I feel that my insurance company cares about its customers.”
Overall, the results for the two statements are quite similar with about two-thirds saying they agree. But by geographic splits, it’s clear that the UK and New Zealand respondents are significantly less satisfied than those from Portugal and America; approximately 20% points lower on the company that cares about its customers.
There is clearly still a long way to go to improve customer perception of insurance companies both in the UK and in New Zealand.”
Download the Global Consumer Insurance Insights whitepaper to see the full results and analysis.