The direct written premium income of the Taiwan non-life insurance industry recorded a fourth consecutive year of positive growth in 2013. The total premium income expanded from TWD120.48bn ($3.9bn) to TWD124.9bn ($4.1bn), with a positive growth rate of 3.67 percent.
The growth momentum was mainly contributed by motor insurance, which benefitted from the growth of new vehicle sales and the increase in the premium rate of the voluntary third party liability insurance. Most of the non-motor business, such as fire insurance, marine cargo insurance, and engineering insurance, revealed negative premium growth instead. In regard of the market portfolio in 2013 by classes of non-life insurance business, motor insurance still accounted a major share of 51.6 percent of total premium income (see Fig. 1)
Facing intense competition, Cathay Century devotes itself to providing the perfect service and most diverse value to its customers. It continues to design products to meet customer demands and develop a variety of mobile devices to boost all-around service quality and efficiency.
With this in mind, Cathay Century published mobile app My Mobicare to help drivers involved in traffic accidents. We also build a loss prevention service network to assist policyholders in risk planning and accident prevention, thereby increasing the added value of policies. We set up a Community Care Team in 2012, to help improve the safety of school safety facilities. In addition to all of this, we released the Accident-Free Campus programme, to enhance the safety of schools, teachers and students.
Keeping an environment full of children and staff members safe and accident-free is not an easy task
In Taiwan, most car accidents require drivers to notify the police department. After the police have registered the claim, taken photographs and processed all-related paper works, the insured person(s) should then contact their insurance companies. However, drivers may misdirect the police or neglect to confirm or secure the scenes and miss opportunities to collect evidence to claim.
To better serve our policyholders in this situation, Cathay Century developed the My Mobicare app, the first mobile application in Taiwan’s Property and Casualty (P&C) insurance industry that combines positioning, photo shooting and instant contact to help policyholders involved in traffic accidents. Our mobile app was designed in order to help drivers to deal with car accidents, enhance customer satisfaction and promote corporate image.
My Mobicare offers users an easy-to-follow interface and step-by-step guidance. It also integrates back-end customer service support processes. As long as you are a Cathay Century Insurance Auto customer, you can be uploaded directly to the customer service centre at working hours. Our customer service staff will call back within three minutes to help customers cope at the scene of any accident. If necessary, our claims personnel will be sent to the scenes immediately to handle claims.
Significant benefits provided by the app include:
- Its popularity: the app is one of the most popular on the non-life insurance market. From October 2013, the app was downloaded 61,433 times (the sum of iOS and Android platforms), the highest volume among the non-life insurance market;
- Clients can obtain instant information at accident scenes or otherwise;
- The app can establish direct channels to clients. The company used to communicate with clients by channels of agents. With this app, they set up another communication platform to get direct response from the target clients, interact with potential clients and benefit current clients with their active responses;
- To promote Cathay Century’s corporate image through word of mouth. This has already been successful having seen the company nominated and winning quite a few awards.
Through this app service launch and promotion, we have devoted ourselves to providing customers with more convenient, more immediate, and ultimately, a better service experience. Through feedback from our customers and claims specialists, we expect directions to improve the quality of our services and also enhance customer satisfaction.
Over the years, Cathay Century has provided various means of public liability insurance for elementary schools, junior schools and high schools. According to our accumulated experiences and analysis of numerous cases, we found that accidents play a major role in campus safety issues, accounting for 18.3 percent. The highest accident rate was recorded in elementary schools, with children between the age of seven to 12, the most accident-prone among all school systems. In our investigation, the main reasons for accidents were attributed to unsafe equipment and unsafe behaviour, and both of the above could be prevented or reduced by loss prevention measures.
Playground safety is the major concern for most parents. Most accidents and casualties often happened on the playground, and indeed, approximately 38 percent of serious accidents occur in the playground. When children are treated in the emergency rooms, the accidents are usually due to unsafe facilities and unsafe behaviours, such as falling on the playground, or other hazards such as sharp edges of equipment or malfunction of facilities. According to the authorities’ fatality report, the major reasons of accidents are falling, entanglement of clothing or ropes tied to or caught on equipment, head entrapment, and impact by moving swings and equipment. Adequate facilities maintenance and regular inspections are also necessary to the playground management.
Keeping an environment full of children and staff members safe and accident-free is not an easy task. A small defect on the playground might cause serious injury and could lead to legal complications for schools. In order to provide more comprehensive protection to the campus, its students and faculty members, Cathay Century innovatively delivers a series of accident prevention services by inspecting the playground safety, advocating ‘Play Safely’ activities, and conducting ‘Safe Schoolyard’ forums. We expect that the accident prevention services will reduce and minimise the amount of injuries and losses from accidents.
Cathay Century takes the lead in techniques for loss prevention and loss control in insurance industry. We believe that, with our long-term experiences in loss control, many of these injuries could certainly be prevented beforehand. Therefore we adopt nationally recognised safety standards ASTM F1487-11 (Standard Consumer Safety Performance Specification for Playground Equipment for Public Use) for playground equipment. With the aid of other safety guidelines, we help campuses examine their equipment in order to build safer playgrounds.
We became the first insurance company to offer free services of inspection corresponding to ASTM F1487-11, which include technical safety guidelines for designing, constructing, operating, and maintaining the playgrounds. We have developed the playground safety checklist to highlight some of the most important safety issues for the campus. After thorough inspection, we submit a report indicating the potential faults or defects of playground equipment and associated recommendations of improvement solutions.
From February 2013 to November 2013, we thoroughly inspected the playground equipment of 32 elementary schools. The main problems were insufficient protection surfaces (31 percent); other related surrounding equipment defects (22 percent), and head entrapment (21 percent). There is an average of 13 defects, which should be improved in every campus. We therefore take action to help the campus improve the defected equipment by replacing or strengthening the protection section to meet the standard of ASTM F1487-11.
Safety awareness is one of the other factors, which might affect playground safety. Many of the injuries are caused by the unsafe behaviour of students. Consequently, we conducted a serious of Play Safely activities to teach students how to avoid unsafe behaviours from preventing accidents in every way. Unlike the traditional approach, we designed vivid activities by means of dancing, singing, and playing games. To make an impression, we created cartoon characters to promote safety awareness. Students can learn correct concepts about how to use the playground equipment properly through these activities.
Other than that, we also invite faculty members from schools to attend seminar of campus safety. By offering various concepts and ideas about how to maintain a safe environment on campus, the aim of preventing hazards and providing a safe campus can be easily achieved. According to the questionnaires after the seminar, 95 percent of the attendees consider these seminar courses helpful for enhancing professional ability. Over 95 percent of the attendees indicated that they would recommend colleagues or friends to participate in similar seminars in the future.