The Future of Insurance Podcast – Ed Halsey

Co-Founder & COO, hubb

Season 3, Episode 25, November 29, 2022

Guest Bio

When nearly two-thirds of a broker’s day is spent on admin, it’s no wonder commissions are so high. Yet all of that cost isn’t going to adding value to clients, but brokers also struggle to find a way to charge less and have a viable brokerage.

This is what hubb is addressing as they rethink the use of technology, tools and approach to build a better customer experience and value through efficiency, AI-empowered decision making, and commissions that are 20-30% lower than the industry norm in the UK, and COO and Co-Founder Ed Halsey shares how they’re doing this so we can all take inspiration.

And he talks about their experimentation in the metaverse to add some first hand perspective to something many of us are still unsure about.

Highlights from the Show

    • Hubb is using technology to try to change how brokers can serve clients more efficiently, and therefore take a significantly lower commission
    • Ed believes the model of insurance is broken in how it’s sold; we’re basically putting tech around fundamentally broker processes, of which there are several
      • Commission is broken as you’re paid less if do better, and paid more if you do a worse job at getting better prices
      • Bordereau is another example where we take spreadsheets weeks after the information was needed where APIs could provide it instantly
    • InsurTech has had a lot of momentum as it’s allowed insurers to deploy their capacity in laser focused ways they haven’t been able to in the past
    • Customer acquisition costs in insurance are so high now that commissions don’t reflect the service the customer gets so much as how much it costs to acquire them as a customer (which they don’t value)
    • The things the customer cares about are the coverage and the total price, and the only thing a broker controls in that mix is their share of the price through how much commission they have to charge to be a sustainable business
    • That means brokers have to look at ways to do their work more efficiently to be able to work at a lower commission rate, which is what Hubb is doing
    • This takes a mix of a mindset from outside and inside insurance to crack this nut
    • Hubb typically charges 20-30% less than other brokers
    • 63% of a broker’s day goes to petty administrative work, so Hubb sees a lot of room to automate, save, and allow brokers to use that time to engage with insureds and do more business at a lower cost base because of the reduced waste
    • The industry often dictates how and where customers will interact with us or be served rather than what the customer wants, and often use compliance as an excuse when it’s actually just about constraints or limitations we face that the customer doesn’t care about
    • Hubb also uses AI to help identify the right market to send risks to so they’re more effective with their time rather than sorting through every market in the industry, shotgunning submissions out to everyone or missing good options
    • Ed and Hubb have been using the metaverse, using it, for example, to run their last board meeting
      • They see a lot of possibility in it through new interaction methods, reducing travel costs, etc
      • They also recognize it has a long way to go to be viable, and it’s very early days
      • Once you get over the initial awkwardness, you feel like you’re genuinely in the room with people, and that it’s very different from Zoom or Teams
    • Overall, he sees this about meeting customers where they are, which is why Hubb is trying it

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This episode is brought to you by The Future of Insurance thought leadership series ( from Bryan Falchuk.

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