By Zainab Iwayemi
- Seek transparent, clear communication on claim settlement
- Want insurers to tackle cultural biases
- Say industry ripe for roadmap
- Call for wide insurance coverage for SMEs
In a search for solution to the issue of ‘no claims’ which has continued to be a bane of insurance firms, experts have advocated transparency and clear communication between insurance firms and customers for easy claim settlement during a webinar hosted by BizWatch Nigeria.
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Delivering his keynote themed around building financial resilience with insurance solutions amid COVID-19, Ekerete Ola Gam-Ikon, a consultant in management and strategy insurance highlighted the need for insurance companies to develop products that are relevant to their market in order to improve the insurance space whilst also advising insurance companies to maintain a constant line of communication with customers on the relevance of their products to the market they operate in.
“Customers expect you to communicate with them on issues bothering on claims but what we have now is that they are asking questions and no one is responding,” he said, noting that it is tough for insurance proponents when people have to go through the whole process of insurance. “I hope that as we encourage people to buy insurance, we encourage them to understand how it works,” he said.
Bankole Banjo, a senior manager, Brand, Media and Communications at African Alliance Insurance, while speaking, noted that insurance is open to everyone as against the belief that insurance is reserved for the elites in Nigeria alone. He, therefore, urged insurance companies to take hold of the narrative around insurance in tackling cultural biases that had discouraged Nigerians from buying insurance policies.
“Insurance is not an elite thing as it is something that is literally part of life. We have to tackle the issue of cultural bias, make sure religious leaders buy into the idea of insurance and build trust so that people can understand the benefits of insurance,” he said.
In the view of Olumide Ibidapo, managing director and CEO of FBN Insurance Brokers, the industry is ripe for a roadmap that would guide the operators on what they need to achieve whilst also advising underwriters to bring in products suitable for small and medium enterprises in order to provide coverage for financial loss, workers and physical assets.
Speaking on the lessons from the COVID-19 and EndSARS crises for small business owners, Oluwatunminiu Ayodabo, associate director, General Business Commercial, Leadway Assurance, said that insurance coverage for SMEs should be wide enough to cover their financial loss, workers and physical assets. He also stressed the need to have the products simplified and timely.
“An unforeseen event like the #ENDSAR aftermath can adversely impact businesses if the company does not have an insurance policy to help protect against such an event or lack of adequate capital to restore any loss. However, business liability insurance can help to minimize risks so that the business continues to operate and grow. Largely, in an event where business hits severe misfortunes, it may not be able to solely afford the cost of getting back on track and running again.
“In the case of an insured business, the risk is shared between the company and the insurance company,” he said.