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Forward Focus - March 2013

Insurance and wealth management

Forward FocusWelcome to the first edition of Forward Focus for 2013.

This is the sixth year since KiwiSaver was launched and it only seemed right to turn our attention to what is fast becoming one of the most important investment products in New Zealand’s history.

Whilst this publication has tended to focus on insurance related trends and issues, KiwiSaver is simply too big to ignore. As at 31 December 2,048,656 Kiwis were registered as members. What is most interesting however is the proportion of members who did not make an active decision to enrol directly through a provider. Of the total membership 784,598 were automatically enrolled and a further 249,954 opted in via their employer.

For such a massive scheme, it is remarkable how many members are yet to “plant their feet” and actively choose a provider. Even when they do, there is little to prove that this will be for the long term as the KiwiSaver Act allows for such easy switching between providers and schemes – a fact I’m sure most providers are all too aware of.

One thing is for certain and that is a provider who makes a conscious decision to own the concept of “customer engagement”, one who has turned retention and customer satisfaction into their number one acquisition tool will win in this game. We are not sure that any provider has got this entirely right yet, why not? I’m sure each provider has their reasons – a simple focus on acquisition of new membership during the “land grab”, or maybe a lack of surety about the return on any investment into this space. Some may be convinced they are already doing this. What is clear however is that there will be a number of providers reading this right now who cringe every time they read their “switched out of scheme” report.

This got us thinking. What is an ideal customer experience?

I hope the articles in this edition provoke some thought and discussion. As always I welcome your comments. Please feel free to forward on to those colleagues in your organisation who you feel may benefit from the content.

Kind regards
Greg Haddon






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