The Connected World

The number of mobile phone subscriptions worldwide is approaching the global population, almost seven billion by the end of 2014, corresponding to a 96% penetration rate.

Using mobile solutions to reach out to people

Many UK insurance groups have seen their traditional savings markets shrink

The retail distribution review and banks retreating from offering mass-market advice have changed the landscape for insurers. However, the revolution in people using phones and tablets to access the internet can help us. Buying financial services products through mobile devices is slowly becoming more common. Our focus is not just on sales but making it easier for people to engage with our brand, research our products, manage product holdings and communicate with us digitally.

Our goal is to be the UK market leader for online life insurance, pensions and investment platforms.”

Our journey to digital engagement with customers

We have existing online strengths in retail protection, household insurance and digital fund platforms. In 2014, we sought to enhance our digital capabilities in other product areas by taking steps to improve the way that savings customers can manage their investments online and change their personal information. We are very much alive to the risks of cyber threats. However, we need to achieve much more digitally and have taken action to strengthen our experience in digital with a number of key appointments, including a chief marketing officer, with responsibilities for growing out digital capabilities, and appointments at non-executive director level.

The UK’s biggest digital platform

We own the UK’s largest digital investment platform, with around £72 billion of assets. It’s been a challenging year for Cofunds, with continued regulatory changes associated with the retail distribution review. We’ve worked hard to ensure that we provide a competitive charging structure for investors and adhere to the regulator’s new legislation for transparency of charges.

Pedestrians in an Indian streetscene (photo)

Using mobility to engage new customers

We’ve been working closely with Vodafone to drive innovation in the way that we engage customers. Changes in consumer behaviour and developments in mobile technology provide us with an opportunity to offer simple, affordable and easily accessible services to customers previously out of reach. Both Legal & General and Vodafone are committed to developing socially useful services; our strategic partnership offers a fantastic opportunity for both organisations to combine expertise and deliver a new model for financial services that helps millions of customers, both abroad and in the UK, to protect their families and finances.

Our products in India aim to expand financial inclusion and promote a culture of saving.

MANAGING THE RISKS

In an increasingly digital world of inter-connected systems, the types of risk exposure will continue to evolve. We’re alive to cyber threats, risks to our customers’ data, the potential for reputational damage and financial loss. We work closely with our IT business partners to manage new threats as they emerge as well as ensuring our broader IT infrastructure is appropriately scaled to support our plans for growth.

Low cost insurance for low income families in India

Much of the financial activity is driven by three needs: managing cashflow; coping with risk; and raising lump sums. Saving can help meet these needs, but irregular income can make it hard to establish a regular pattern.

During 2014, our Indian joint venture company, IndiaFirst launched its ‘CSC Shubhlabh Plan’ which helps to address these issues by combining a low premium savings plan with life cover. In case of emergency, customers can partially withdraw from their account after five years. The product’s significant social purpose is that it helps protect people from financial shocks, expands financial inclusion and promotes a culture of saving. The entire proposal and acceptance process is carried out on IndiaFirst’s digital platform with policies being issued within three minutes. We now aim to make other simple life products available on customers’ own mobile phones.