Advising on group income protection

    Advising on group income protection

    If I were you, what would I do today when advising a client with Group Income Protection?

    As an ex-adviser (now chained to a desk in my insurance company ivory tower!), I genuinely miss the interaction with employers.

    I find employers are genuinely interested in the value services that characterise our industry (Group Income Protection (GIP) specifically, where they marvelled at what was available), interested in the detail of the technical, legislative and tax aspects of the products and actively seeking the best outcome for their organisations and its employees.

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    So if I were you, with what is going on in the disability world and GIP specifically, what would I be doing, right now, to delight my paying customers with pragmatic actions?

    These actions not only engender client loyalty but can develop further business opportunities. As a financial business case the virtuous circle does stack up if you take the time to do this kind of quality consulting work.

    Early Intervention Services

    To start with, I would do is educate them about what they are not using and therefore missing out on. Firstly, the industry-wide increased usage and profile of Early Intervention Services (EIS) demonstrates the importance and value of accessing vocational rehabilitation early.

    Now providing a paperless vocational rehabilitation referral process from day one of an absence, Canada Life has quantified that 90 per cent of EIS referrals do not result in a claim, leading to reduced claim incidences for employers and therefore sustainable premiums.

    Of these, 80 per cent of employees who are referred to EIS make a return to work before claim. Simply put: we are offering outsourced vocational rehabilitation at no additional cost. What a “wow!” that will get!

    Secondly, we support employers making claims for employees with mental health issues from day one. Some 80 per cent per cent of these claims last only seven months where EIS is used, compared to 2 years if it is not, a 70 per cent reduction in claim duration.

    As mental ill health is the cause of 25 per cent of our claims and 21 per cent are musculoskeletal, you can see why this service is important. Our research shows over half (57 per cent) of UK employees have suffered from mental health problems while in employment, with stress (43 per cent) and depression (26 per cent) the most commonly experienced problems. There is a clear need to support employers.

    Removing the evident challenge of complex mental health, subjective case management will genuinely delight managers and employees, let alone the HR team (if the organisation has one).

    The third thing, fantastic at a case management and strategic health and wellbeing level, is the additional support services.

    There are a raft of these available from insurers and clients are offered so many ‘embedded’ services they would like someone to tell them which they should be using. But what are they?