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Claims processes, branding flagged as key issues for industry 

Brand trust, digital features and claims processes are areas requiring close attention from life insurers, according to research firm Investment Trends

The group says its latest Consumer Insurance Needs Report offers insights on key life insurance trends among Australians.

When it comes to selecting an insurance provider, brand strength is a decisive factor, with consumers influenced more by brand recognition than by advice or premiums.

“In a market where 800,000 Australians are interested in total permanent disability insurance, and 1.8 million are considering income protection insurance, the impact of a trusted brand cannot be understated,” head of research Irene Guiamatsia said.

The report says claims processing takes an average of 7.3 days for superannuation-linked life insurance policyholders and 5.1 days outside of super accounts.

“Policyholders are clear in their desire for more straightforward and prompt claims processing,” Dr Guiamatsia said. “A seamless and efficient claims experience is vital for client retention and satisfaction.”

Investment Trends says out of 20 million adult Australians, 6.7 million are covered by some form of life insurance. Despite this significant uptake, life cover is perceived as a secondary measure of financial security compared with savings and investing habits.

“Even with 34% of the adult population holding life insurance, it’s often seen as less integral than other financial tools,” Dr Guiamatsia said. “This underscores the need for the industry to bolster the perceived value of life insurance in one’s financial portfolio.”