ProtectionMar 27 2023

Aviva ramps up protection proposition for 2023

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Aviva ramps up protection proposition for 2023
Aviva's Fran Bruce, managing director, protection UK Life, outlines support for advisers and clients.

Aviva is working on developing its protection proposition in 2023, improving service levels across individual and group insurance products. 

The insurer will also shortly introduce cost-of-living support for customers, building on its existing low-cost, easy-access range of protection products, by introducing support such as flexible payment arrangements.

According to Fran Bruce, who became Aviva's managing director, protection, UK life, in 2021, there seems to be “no end” to the cost-of-living crisis right now, and therefore the company feels it is right to support advisers and their clients.

Even though its individual protection sales rose 9 per cent in 2022 - a positive sign "against the backdrop of a cooling housing market and amid the cost-of-living crisis", Bruce said there was more that companies and the wider protection industry could do to help customers.

We are developing more support for SMEs and their insurance brokers to understand their options. 

She told FTAdviser: “Sadly we cannot see an end to this right now.

"Therefore, we must take great steps forward in terms of customer understanding, the clarity of our communications, the development of our products and services, and to ensure that our systems are continually modernised.”

Over the past 12 months she said Aviva had been working hard on developing its proposition and using data analytics to help drive protection sales into the UK market.

This will include extending current technological developments on the closed books that Aviva owns. “In terms of the legacy books, we are getting on with it”, she said. 

The company also wants to “harness the power of data analytics”, according to Bruce, who said: “Can we get to a point where we are almost able to auto-accept? 

“It’s a big challenge but there are between 10 per cent and 15 per cent of claims that we can pay on the same day, effectively. We want to raise this.”

More than a statistic

She said there are a combination of things with a strong growth story and said there had also been strong momentum in the first quarter this year.

Bruce also pointed to strong claims statistics, which as FTAdviser reported, showed Aviva had a 98.3 per cent paid rate on IP, meaning a £1bn payout in protection claims. 

But she said claims statistics were not enough. “We are now focusing on the level of experience a customer receives and how to make it a better experience for claimants."

Aviva's 2022 protection polices and payouts. Source: AvivaNumber of claims paidValue of claims paid

% of claims paid

Life insurance (inc: terminal illness benefit)41,002£683,638,56399.40%
Critical illness( inc: Children’s Benefit + Total Permanent Disability)4,689£334,070,89493.50%
Income protection3,683£50,636,47094.30%
Fracture cover866£2,185,30089.70%
Hospital/Trauma/Therapy/Carer cover355£531,17799.20%

Part of this is to do better communications around lapses, such as cancelled direct debits.

“This always has triggered correspondence, and we have always offered a grace period, but we have been trying to make our wording a little more clear for customers”, she said.