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Consumer Focus and GRC

​The TAS Insurance Report for this year showed a greater customer focus in the insurance 2019 and onwards.

This is along with the innovative mind-set that the 2017 report indicated was being encumbered by difficult legacy systems.

When the report was released TAS Ceo Shane Baker said in the release for the TAS Insurance Report launch “This is great news for the consumer who will benefit from the strong customer focus that Insurers have. There is a shift from customer ‘service’ to customer ‘experience’ which means consumers can now more easily do business on their own terms. The sector has needed this shift for some time, and it’s great to see that happening”.

However, the report shows very little investment in risk and compliance over the next 12 months.

It indicated that only nine per cent flagged the conduct and compliance as their way forward, and when it came to the question of what companies would be investing in the for the next the 12 months, only eight per cent highlighted risk and compliance.

Though not speaking directly to the findings of the TAS Insurance report, GRCI’s strategic stakeholder engagement consultant Carole Ferguson said that companies may not be meeting their basic licensing requirements as stipulated in the 912A1 and Regulatory Guide 104.

This is important since the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has committed to pursuing more penalties.

Consumer-focused equals better consumer outcomes?

Baker told the GRC Professional that the driver for the consumer-focus highlighted in the report could be in part a response to the accusation that the financial services did not put the customer first in the past.

“I think what we are getting through the report, and certainly the conversations that we’ve had in the marketplace over that period of time, is that what they have to accept and realise is customer first.”

Baker told the GRC Professional earlier this week that there are connections between the tech-based approach of removing friction between consumer and the service being offered the insurance companies tackling the cultural problems that have been splashed across the mainstream media pages over the last year.

He added that he believes that the industry has genuinely made investments in risk and compliance and the findings in this report reflect the next step of organisations smoothing out the customer experience.

“I get the impression that the reason why they don’t see that the as major focus this year as an investment because they have made a lot of that investment,” Baker said.

Regtech Investment?

Where risk and compliance are seen in the report is on that technology piece of the report, 18 per cent of respondents indicated that they had invested in RegTech.

While Baker said that there are still ways go he sees Fintechs and Regtechs investment as the natural next step and insurance industry no longer feels encumbered by its legacy systems.

“I still think that there is a long way to go, but what we are seeing more and more is recognition and acceptance that technology, the Regtechs or Insurtechs on the business side, is a necessity and must because it is not something that they can address internally by themselves.”

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