Insurance manifesto - comments from Jason Stockwood

Change is coming

Fresh thinking in any business requires a little creative disruption and the ability to bring new perspectives from other sectors. Curious by nature, I am continuously looking for new ideas and improvements. One of my most satisfying experiences as CEO of Simply Business has been the way we are setting new standards in how technology is transforming business operations and how we engage, listen and respond to customers. Our goal continues to be to deliver not just industry leading, but business leading customer service. Whilst we serve predominantly small businesses and landlords, we want to integrate smart customer service into to how we operate and deliver our products.

Having joined insurance from the fields of online dating and travel, I know a thing or two about shaking up outdated industries and how the internet can breathe new joy into all kinds of relationships. The lure of the insurance sector for me was just how much could and should be done to improve experiences and empower customers. There is still a much bigger job to be done and the market has to take collective responsibility to address its damaged reputation and make it more progressive. Simply Business’s disruptive position in an outdated market makes it an excellent challenger brand, able to make changes – with the support of our customers – in the right way. For me, the industry is at the same stage the travel sector was in the late 1990s. Back then, travel was a monopolised and laggard market and no one was using the web in an effective way. The introduction of technology, and its correct use, transformed this, and this is the opportunity I see for the insurance sector now. It’s ripe for transformation, perhaps even a revolution.

So true to our challenger ethos, we have listened again to what businesses want and are continuing to make changes to how insurance is delivered.

From what our customers told us, only one in ten of you have ever received clear and concise information when speaking directly to insurers and three quarters have found written insurance documents hard to understand. When asked to sum up the industry, British consumers told us they find it ‘outdated, exclusive and confusing’. We weren’t surprised but wanted to make sure those experiences don’t apply to Simply Business.

In response, today marks the launch of our Manifesto for Change. Crowd-sourced from businesses and customers, this Manifesto represents a long period of listening and the first step in another period of learning. We’ve formed a series of dedicated changes and commitments; we promise to keep what we do Simple, Honest, Human and to continue Listening.

We want to make life easier for small businesses, whether or not they are insured with us. To that end, we hope that the pledges we make will give our competitors pause for thought too. We want the Manifesto to act as a benchmark and to activate a new wave of thinking across the rest of the insurance industry. We are by no means saying that we have all the answers, but we want to take our commitments forward as an opportunity to start an open conversation and encourage a new direction for the industry as a whole.

The Manifesto for Change is far more than just words on paper. We’ll continue investing and improving and our pledges will take on new forms as we learn more. We want to know what you want and need from your insurer to ensure that we are moving in the right direction. If a revolution starts with the first step, we’re moving at a fast pace.

So please, join the conversation today at #SimplyVoice.

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