VERO BUSINESS RESEARCH REVEALS POTENTIAL GAP IN INSURANCE COVER
21 June 2022
New research findings about the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on small and medium enterprises (SME’s) in New Zealand, suggest a gap between the changes business owners have made during the pandemic and the subsequent changes made to their insurance cover.
The Vero SME Insurance Index, from which these findings are drawn, is an annual survey of New Zealand small and medium sized enterprise owners and decision makers (SMEs), designed to gather their thoughts on insurance and their use of brokers.
Preliminary Index findings this year show that 79% of broker SME clients have made changes to their business as a result of Covid-19 while only 23% have discussed these changes with their broker, and only 10% have made changes to their insurance.
Vero’s Chris Brophy, Executive Manager Business, says the identification of this gap may provide a real opportunity for brokers to reach out to their SME customers and provide additional value. While for some business owners the changes made may be temporary, for others they reflect a ‘new normal’ which may mean their insurance is no longer providing the right cover, Brophy says.
“We can see that the pandemic has caused SMEs to make changes to both their business and insurance, but a large percentage of broker SME clients haven’t talked to their broker about the impacts on their business. This may mean many broker SME clients are missing out on the expertise and guidance of their broker at this important time.”
Brophy says this could provide another opportunity for brokers to build trust and strengthen their relationship with SMEs, to see how each clients’ business has been impacted, and then provide advice to best suit their business needs.
Other interesting findings from the initial release of the 2022 SME Insurance Index survey data are that 23% of SMEs have had to dive into savings, get loans or use retirement funds to stay afloat since the onset of the pandemic. Economic, regulatory and legislative changes are the issues of most concern, with survey results showing the three most affected regions were Otago, Auckland and Waikato.
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