Insurer acts on broker responses to improve market relationships.

AXA is adding more front-line staff after admitting it considered feedback from brokers when restructuring its commercial department.

The move ties in with the appointment of Paul Meehan, former co-chief executive of Venture Preference, as customer experience director in July, as well as the insurer’s effort to remodel its branch operations.

Anthony Middle, managing director of AXA’s commercial lines intermediary division, said the company was adding more resources to improve its relationships with brokers.

“We have listened to a lot of customer responses over the last year,” he said. “We did some further research just understanding what the practical requirements are in our customer segments.

“We are reorganising our teams that face our customers. They can go to a team of people that they know and have a dedicated team of people ready and able to respond to them. As we are adding people to the front line, we are making more people available to them.”

The insurer has created a new role, commercial distribution director, which has been filled by AXA’s head of distribution, Keith Hector.

The commercial sales team has been split into four sections.

The strategic partners division, headed by Martyn Grime, will manage the accounts of consolidators, networks and national brokers.

Large independent brokers will be dealt with by Karen Osborne, head of distribution partners.

Small to medium-sized regional and community brokers will be handled in its commercial partners business, currently headed by Andy Halstead.

AXA has also announced plans for a new business unit. Middle said the team would be “dedicated to supporting one-off opportunities”. He added that a head of the new business unit was due to be appointed in the near future.

Other appointments announced by the insurer include Dave Gill as customer delivery director. He will be responsible for AXA’s entire commercial branch operation. The insurer also said Mike Philips would continue to head AXA’s specialist markets unit. The business’ underwriting operations will now report directly into each business unit. Roy Watkinson will continue to head the commercial underwriting business..