Insurance Times speaks to NIG’s etrade business manager Nick Makin on the five service factors that are being explored in this year’s etrading survey

The Insurance Times Etrading Survey 2020 is now open to brokers. While the survey is live, we will be speaking to a wide variety of insurers and software houses that are involved in the survey, to discuss the progress made over the last year as well as what future developments will benefit brokers.

Here, we speak to etrade business manager Nick Makin, from NIG, on the topical service factors being investigated in our annual etrading survey.

A service area being investigated in the Insurance Times Etrading Survey 2020 is around usability and trading ease. Can you tell us what developments NIG has made in this area over the last year?

It’s really important for us to receive feedback from our brokers about how easy it is to use our extranet trading platform, TheHub, and how easy NIG is to trade with overall. Based on what they have told us, we’ve introduced a lot of improvements, such as the ability to upload property details into our property owners product and vehicle details into our mini fleet product via a spreadsheet – all viewable on a single page.

Insurance Times is also exploring quotability as part of our etrading survey. What has NIG done in this arena over the past year?

We’ve improved quotability across our product range this year. For example, we’ve added more space in free-text fields to support Defaqto rating across our packaged products. Now, it’s easier for our brokers to compare coverage across insurers and provide a credit score rating for our property owners product.

Another service area being looked at in this year’s survey is around the quality of support provided to brokers online. Has NIG made any changes here over the last 12 months?

Quality of support and keeping our promises are both very important to NIG. During 2019, we’ve implemented improvements across our panel and extranet trading platforms to reduce both referral volume and frequency. This includes enhancing live chat and trialling a proactive referral resolution. Also, we’re continually investing in our underwriters and increasing their personal underwriting authority, resulting in more queries being resolved first time. We’re really proud of our average customer satisfaction score of 94% for the year.

We are also interested in the quality and number of questions asked to brokers. How does NIG approach this?

For TheHub users, we’ve changed the quality and number of questions asked so that it’s easier to place cases with NIG across our property owners and mini fleet products. For brokers using a software house for competitive panel trading, we’ve made changes to how we treat ancillary questions and answers on our property owners and business package products - it’s quicker and easier for brokers to upload cases with large portfolios of premises or vehicles.

Finally, we also want to find out about the breadth of cover and product range being provided to brokers and their customers over the last 12 months. What developments has NIG made in this area over the last year that benefits brokers?

Continuous improvement and responsiveness have always been important to NIG. Over the last year, our brokers have seen enhancements to our breadth of cover and product range. For example, quoting for risks we may not have considered in the past. Plus, we launched our tradesman, professional and shop etrade products on SSP etrade platform, which opened a new route for brokers to etrade with us.

In 2020, we’ll continue to evaluate software houses and TheHub, capturing insight on how our products are performing for brokers and their clients. That way, we’ll ensure our product range and breadth of cover continue to evolve as the etrade market expands and clients’ needs change.