Chief distribution officer Phil Bayles added that regional brokers’ high sales figures are a ‘testament to their adaptability and resilience’

Insurer Aviva has recorded a 14% increase in commercial lines gross written premium (GWP) driven across each of its digital broker channels, Fast Trade and e-trade, during the first half of 2020.

The firm’s H1 financial results also revealed that Aviva’s regional broker partners contributed to a 25% improvement in the amount of GWP traded online.

Aviva attributed these improvements to a change in working style since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, as insurance professionals have been required to work from home to mitigate the spread of coronavirus.

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Once lockdown was implemented by prime minister Boris Johnson in March, Aviva noted a 40% drop in incoming phone calls within the first week of working remotely, while its live chat facility received a third more enquiries over the same time frame, increasing to a 43% total overall.

Out of hours emails sent to Aviva also increased to nearly 1,000 a week as a result of the national lockdown, as many individuals juggled childcare and home schooling alongside their day-to-day work.

Broker support

Furthermore, Aviva has been hosting a free webinar series as part of its Covid-19 information hub on its Aviva Broker site – this has seen a 400% increase in webinar attendance during lockdown as more than 400 brokers on average attend each live webinar.

Around 6,500 brokers have participated in the webinars to date. The most popular session was titled ‘Trading in a Hard Market: The Perfect Storm’, which received 1,200 attendees.

Phil Bayles, Aviva’s chief distribution officer said: “Covid-19 has changed the way we live and work. We have worked to ensure that brokers can continue to trade with us, however and whenever they want, while ensuring they have the materials they need to continue to do what they do best – serve our clients.

“Regional broker sales remained high throughout the first half of 2020 and this is a testament to their adaptability and resilience. We will continue to support our brokers and invest in our five-star rated Fast Trade platform and e-trading through 2020 and beyond.

“We are constantly talking to brokers about how to improve our platforms as shown by the ratings we have achieved, and we will continue to do so as we emerge from the pandemic.”