Recently, the CEO of aha insurance, Steve Livingstone, sat down for a quick Q&A on the introduction of home insurance, and what that means for insurance consumers in Ontario.
Q: Going in, what was the underlying philosophy when you launched home insurance?
Steve Livingstone: The approach around our home insurance product is founded on the same principles as our auto insurance.
We have the same objective for the consumer – to give them the ability to control and manage their policies as they choose, fully supported by an omni-channel service platform and capability that provides quality advice and service. We can do this digitally, with a human touch, or a combination of both – it’s the customer’s choice. It’s about putting them in the driver’s seat and providing them with the tools they need to manage their policies
Our home insurance offering is an extension of all the principles that drove the launch of aha insurance as a whole – it’s about more choice for the consumer.
Q: Why should insurance consumers consider aha home insurance?
Steve Livingstone: Home and Auto is like a PB&J – some things just go together.
There are many advantages for consumers to combine their home and auto insurance with a single provider. First, it’s just one click or call to handle both products, making it easier and taking less time to manage. Our customers can deal with all of their insurance in one place, accessible anytime and anywhere, entirely at their convenience.
Second, there are tremendous savings for consumers who combine their products. They can save up to 18% on their auto policies and up to 50% savings on their home insurance. That’s very significant. The concept is the same as if I bundle multiple products together with Rogers; we expect that there will be a discount.
Q: Not everyone is going to bundle their insurance, however. Are there other benefits?
Steve Livingstone: Absolutely. The convenience and ease in buying insurance from aha is incredible. To get a home quote, all we need is your address and most of the work is already done for you. With just your address we can shorten the process immensely – we can provide a picture of the home and all the information that is needed to get an accurate guaranteed quote.
Our customer will see the estimated replacement cost for their house and will be presented with assumptions such as the type of plumbing and heating they maintain. We don’t ask them to add any additional data, just validate what’s there.
This minimal information is enough for us to provide them with their quote right then and there – in less than three minutes. For homeowners that have other items they need to insure – jewelry, art, collectibles, their mountain bike, things like that – it’s just a few more clicks to easily add those items into their policy. We’ve worked hard and tried to make our user experience simple and intuitive. We’ve also tried to be consistent between home and auto, so there is a seamless experience providing additional comfort level there.
Finally, and this is genuinely different; consumers, if they’re happy with the quote, all they need do is hit the “buy” button. That’s it. All their documentation is sent to them electronically, and immediately available on the “My Account” area of our Self-Service Portal.
Our home insurance quoting and purchasing journey is a continuation of our passion to deliver an exceptional personal insurance purchase experience. We’re not reinventing what we did for auto. We are extending and continuing it, to provide a phenomenal amount of functionality that is easy for the customer to access and use.
Q: Digital consumers have high expectations when it comes to customer service. How is aha insurance addressing this?
Steve Livingstone: We’re striving to make aha insurance an omnichannel company – meaning we can help consumers whenever and however they want to buy their insurance. We have a powerful digital ecommerce platform and we also have a team of amazing insurance professionals to answer any of our customers questions, provide good advice, and guide our customer to the right products and services.
We support both of these platforms with excellent tools to access these products and advice. For example; more and more we are finding people are utilizing our online chat service. To me, that is an excellent example of how people want to communicate today and the tools they use. As well, Igins, our digital assistant, is always available throughout the journey to answer questions.
We’re especially excited about how Igins is evolving into a much more robust and interactive tool for our customers. This omni-channel approach is the evolution of customer service, and we are fortunate to be able to launch with it in place.
Q: So, what’s next for aha insurance?
Steve Livingstone: We continue to be passionate about delivering innovative solutions to our customers. Those solutions include not only leading products and services, but also giving our customers control when it comes to managing their home and auto insurance needs and providing them with the help, information and support they need to make the right decisions.
It’s a never-ending journey. There is no finish line to this. We’re going to continue to tirelessly pursue making the insurance experience better for the consumer and we are going to continue to invest in our business and our customers.