Insurers have reacted well to the pandemic and generally improved their quality of service, according to SME survey figures from GlobalData.
Our 2021 UK SME Insurance Survey showed that 25.1% of SMEs felt the quality of service from their insurer had improved since the pandemic, which was very consistent with the 25.0% recorded last year. While slightly fewer SMEs (0.5 percentage points [pp]) believed their service had significantly improved, slightly fewer (0.2pp) also believed it had significantly decreased.
These are positive results for the insurance industry, which has done well to back up the positive results seen in 2020 in the immediate aftermath of the first lockdown. This shows that insurers have continued to provide good service to SMEs as uncertainty has remained throughout 2020 and the first half of 2021. Insurers generally struggle with public sentiment and trust, so the fact that only 6.5% of SMEs believe the quality of service has decreased during such a disruptive event as COVID-19 is a major plus.
The insurance industry has not been without controversy since the pandemic started, with the high-profile business interruption claims payout cases going to the courts. Insurers eventually lost and were forced to pay out claims, but in spite of that, they have managed to keep consumers relatively happy. Some motor and health insurance customers did receive premium rebates in 2020 as a result of not using their policies fully. Micro and sole traders, in particular, may have benefited from this, which will have enhanced the view of their insurers.