Commercial Insurance Brokers are being advised to act now to bring in new skills to meet the future needs of their clients or face going out of business.
The warning comes in a Chartered Insurance Institute report, “The Future of Commercial Insurance Broking.” Produced by PKF Littlejohn and Konsileo, a broking start-up, the report looks at today’s insurance broking services for SMEs and predicts how it will look in 10 years’ time. It shows how people working within the sector will need to adapt to succeed in 2027.
Interestingly, about 40% of account managers at broking firms think that their roles are at risk because of artificial intelligence and other technological developments. The authors of the report, John Needham and John Warburton, forecast that artificial intelligence will be able to automate processes that transfer information between clients and underwriters. However, they felt that the broker brings value to this procedure. In this case, AI could aid their work rather than be a threat. Insurance brokers should see AI as a means to carry out mundane and time-consuming jobs, allowing them to focus on the parts of the job where they can make a difference. The report suggests that brokers have a bright future if they adapt and are willing to embark on a lifetime of learning.
However, if the likely issues are not addressed now, there could be a future skills gap in broking. It seems as though brokers are on-board, as 81% are aware of the likely skills gap. The report also looks at opportunities for employers and employees to evolve so that they are equipped to adapt to and deal with these new challenges. Therefore, the focus is likely to be even more client-driven in the future, with brokers constantly learning new skills and using new technologies to support their clients further. If AI and IT are taking on more automated procedures and back-office administrative duties, then brokers have a real opportunity to focus more on their clients and their needs. They can also specialise in certain fields or sectors to offer a bespoke service to their clients.
The report aims to show how the profession is evolving and how brokers can start preparing now for the future. Broking firms also have to be aware of the challenges that they face, to be more flexible and to explore more diverse career opportunities.
This article was written by Nick Hoadley, Managing Director, Insurance Search.
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