Opinion

Disrupting the insurance industry

When it comes to insurance, few players match up to the verve and energy of Hollard Ghana.

As an outstanding brand, Hollard has introduced innovative products and services that are swiftly changing the landscape. Hollard takes us on a tour of why it is on a mission to change the insurance landscape and how it is building a strong brand for the present and future.

1. This institution has been in existence for a while and has built a reliable and credible brand. What’s makes this brand such a strong one?

Hollard Ghana is purpose-driven. We seek to enable more people to create and secure a better future by delivering excellence for our customers and partners. We’re an outstanding brand because we do well by doing good. It’s the Hollard Way.

With our triple-win strategy, we desire the best interests of everyday Ghanaians and corporates, providing them with innovative insurance solutions customised to the unique risks they face. We treat everyone with care and dignity, and this is reflected in our fast claims process which has endeared us to our customers and has built our credibility over the years. For our partners, we collaborate to put the customer at the heart of everything we do while achieving exceptional, sustainable and inclusive growth for our businesses. For us, our brand purpose underscores our intention to become the country’s favourite insurer.

Our physical brand is unconventional, and playful, aptly portraying our approachable and quirky nature. Our predominant purple, and the secondary colours orange, aqua and gold provide a vibrant canvas through which we relate using Ghanaian-inspired illustrations, photography and iconography. When we communicate, we want to give people something to smile about. In a world of worry and concern, we make people happy. We insure people, everyone and everything they love so they can go about their lives stress-free knowing we have them covered. We are serious when it matters most.

Although we are an international company headquartered in South Africa, we have our feet firmly planted on Ghanaian soil; with our subsidiaries Hollard Insurance and Hollard Life Assurance, we combine our deep local knowledge of the market having operated successfully as Metropolitan Insurance Company (MET) for 25 years, with the world-class expertise of an international insurance brand.

2. One cannot build a strong brand without infusing the latest technological trends in operations. How have you been able to effortlessly introduce cutting edge technology to move the brand stronger into the 21st century?

As a digitally-inclined company, we believe our ability to process polices and pay claims promptly requires efficiency in operations. The strength of our service offering is matched by our commensurate use of cutting-edge technology such as enterprise software. We frequently automate, update and enhance our systems and distribution networks because we know it makes a positive difference.

3. In terms of future prospects, where do you see this brand in the next 10 to 20 years?

Look out, Ghana, we’re gunning for number 1. We’re gearing for an outstanding future as the country’s favourite insurer. We anticipate that the next decade will be driven by a customer-first and digital-only mindset. Ghanaians will have transitioned fully to expect everything on-demand, and via digital. Today, they face challenges looking for traditional offices to process their insurance needs. Some, who are uninsured, may never sign-up for policies because it’s inconvenient.

By investing in innovative products and diversified distribution channels such as our Hollard-on-the-go booths at Shell stations, we’re exploring organic growth opportunities to bring insurance closer to Ghanaians. We are making accessibility a standard of service delivery to become the yardstick of innovation.

As a certified top employer in Ghana and Africa, recognised as a progressive employer, we are keen to continue attracting and retaining the best talent while driving a high-performance culture.

Last year, the impressive progress we made was rewarded by our general insurance business moving up to number three position in the industry.

4. Most of your colleague players in this industry are also working hard to build reliable brands? As a strong brand builder, what advice do you have for them so that the industry can become a stronger force to reckon with?

In every market, Hollard is outstanding because it’s not business-as-usual for us. Similarly, this must reflect in the way we do business as an industry. Considering the current penetration of insurance in Ghana is abysmal, just a little over 1% of GDP, there is a need to unwrap insurance from the traditional foil of rigidity. Competition is great but there’s scope in Ghana to do more. With strength in numbers we need to take a more collaborative approach to contribute meaningfully to national development.

5. In the short term, what should your staff, customers and other stakeholders expect from this company in 2020?

Hollard Ghana is on the move! 2020 is our year of accelerated action. We are achieving exceptional, sustainable and inclusive growth by partnering to deliver the triple win for our customers, our partners and ourselves. We’re pushing the boundaries and making innovation the standard. We’ve got Ghana covered.

6. A strong and reliable brand pays significant homage to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). What are some of these CSR projects that have projected the brand and contributed to gaining good social capital for the brand?

Insurance is a social good and an enabler of progress. Providing insurance itself is an effort to support people in their time of need. It’s not just about profits for us, it’s about creating real, meaningful progress for more people. Our corporate social responsibility is intentional. It’s about social investment and shared value hence our focus on financial inclusivity through our flagship programme, Hollard Streetwise Finance. Inadequate financial literacy is a snare in the poverty trap. With our Streetwise Finance initiative, we regularly organise workshops with tertiary students, and the informal sector to teach basic financial management and entrepreneurial skills. This empowers them to make better financial decisions; consequently, providing them with a better future.