Alan Inskip, Founder & CEO, Tempcover
Car insurance is a product purchased by many but invokes little passion or excitement. Long call times, excessive questions and endless paperwork make it an experience most people want to avoid until absolutely necessary. That was before the Covid pandemic turned our lives upside-down.
Vehicle usage went down to almost zero as we worked from home or were furloughed or made redundant. With vehicle usage dramatically reduced and money tighter than ever, motorists demanded more flexible alternatives. This led to the rise in demand for usage-based insurance (UBI) products such as temporary vehicle insurance, where motorists only pay for the time they need the policy to cover them for – anywhere from one hour to 28 days.
Traditional insurers have struggled to meet this demand because of their legacy systems, but this gap was swiftly filled by technology-driven insurance companies, or insurtechs, which leverage data, artificial intelligence and machine learning to make insurance products more agile and flexible, in line with modern consumer demand – all at a more competitive price.
While many companies have struggled to survive amid the pandemic, Tempcover – recognised as the UK’s original insurtech – has bucked the trend and more than doubled in size, while achieving record temporary car and van insurance policy sales and turnover. Its secret? A nimble and creative team developing its own in-house proprietary technology. And most importantly, a customer-centric philosophy.
Temporary insurance is a needs-based product that involves rapid, in-the-moment transactions. It is therefore essential to remain front-of-mind and to be in the right place at the right time when a customer requires cover at short notice. Customers don’t want to be forced into a lengthy call for something as simple as adding a driver for a short period. This should be done within a few simple online steps, and this is where the traditional insurers fall short.
In challenging economic times, it’s important to not only listen to customers, but to respond swiftly and meaningfully to their feedback. We’ve designed our user experience entirely around direct feedback from customers. We use rich data to analyse feedback and then swiftly respond to that by updating our user experience accordingly. Our flexibility eliminates any red tape and means customers effectively develop products with us. The end result is a purchase journey where customers can obtain fully comprehensive short-term insurance within just 90 seconds.
Industry collaboration is important too. We work closely with major insurers, brokers and aggregators, as this drives our technology from niche to mainstream, which benefits the entire value chain. Most importantly, customers benefit from the most competitively priced, fit-for-purpose products that are designed specifically around their unique requirements at a time when brand loyalty is in decline, and speed and convenience are trump factors. By establishing these partnerships early, we can ensure even more long-term and sustainable business growth.