In the age of apps and downloads we regularly see new online tools being launched by product providers for the benefit of advisers and clients.
This includes the sale of protection policies and when researching this article I spoke to a number of advisers to find out which tools they’re impressed by and which they find most useful to use with their clients.
Most insurers have a range of tools available, from cover and budget calculators, to pre-underwriting and income risk tools, as well as a host of useful guides and sales aids on their websites.
What we’re looking at here are some of the newer tools on the market, combined with some old favourites that advisers said they find most useful day-to-day.
Lucy Brown, head of protection sales at London & Country is an advocate of using protection tools. She says: “Any tool that helps clients understand the financial reality of not being adequately protected is absolutely a good thing.
However, it is about striking a balance between the serious message we need to get across, and doing it in an interesting way that engages with today’s social media, click on click off generation.”
Here we look at ten of the best protection tools currently available in the market.
Royal London’s lifestyle calculator aims to help advisers highlight to clients the affordability of protection. It looks at how much people spend on seemingly inexpensive items, such as coffee, takeaways, taxis, a glass of wine or magazines, and how it can soon add up.
But by cutting out one or two things a week a client could actually save enough to buy a substantial amount of protection.
Emma Thomson at protection specialist LifeSearch is a fan of this tool: “It helps people look at their lifestyle spending and what they are actually paying for individual things.
“The Exeter has a similar tool that looks at slightly wider expenditure. It’s a good way to help advisers get across messages of affordability to clients.”
Income riskometer tool
As well as insurers, some adviser firms have created their own tools to help engage their clients in protection. Financial advisory firm Drewberry recently launched their ‘Income Riskometer’ tool to help people gauge how at risk their income might be if they were unable to work due to accident or illness.
The tool works by answering five key questions about people’s individual circumstances. This includes whether people would receive sick pay from an employer as well as any other relevant benefits, if they have any savings to fall back on, their capacity to survive on state benefits, as well as potential support from family or friends if they needed it.