Tailoring customer support

People can often find themselves most vulnerable when they are experiencing illness or injury and are unable to work. At TAL, this is central to our purpose as a life insurer. We are particularly focused on supporting customers who may be experiencing vulnerability with regards to their financial situation, state of wellbeing, family situation, the diversity of their background, geographic location, and their experience with grief.

In TAL’s 2020 financial year, our focus on supporting customers experiencing vulnerability intensified through the mental wellbeing and career support services we provided to all customers experiencing hardship as a result of COVID-19. We are continually developing our understanding and identification of customers experiencing vulnerability, which includes engaging with the industry and community leaders to collaborate and leverage best practice.

Supporting customers experiencing vulnerability at claim time

TAL recognises that at claim time, some customers and their families may already be in a particularly vulnerable position. We recognise the additional support customers experiencing vulnerability need, and we focus on tailoring our claims support strategy to ensure we are doing the very best we can to help them. This includes ensuring the customer has a single point of contact throughout the claims journey and equipping our Claims teams with tools to support each customer in a personal, genuine manner that is unique to their circumstances and condition.

Increasing our support of customers in situations of family violence

TAL recognises that family violence is a key vulnerability in the community, and its prevalence increased in 2020, particularly due to changed working arrangements and financial situations during COVID-19. We have added family violence to our financial hardship policy, allowing customers to access financial support on their policies when difficult family situations may make it challenging to pay their premiums. In the coming year, our frontline staff will undertake specialised training on how to manage conversations and offer support to customers who are experiencing family violence.

Support for Aboriginal & Torr​es Strait Islander communities

Through our Customer Advocacy and Innovation teams, we are looking at how we can engage First Nations Australians with resources that can support their financial literacy.

Using data to improve our understanding and support

We are harnessing data to identify potentially vulnerable customers through the life insurance application process, using voice analytics technology to identify potential indicators of risk in consumer interactions and to prioritise these people for additional support.

Partnering to foster the right connections

We partner with specialist external providers to provide tailored health support services. We also partner with trusted experts, such as the University of Sydney Brain and Mind Centre, to stimulate our thinking around supporting customers with certain health conditions.

We encourage the industry and community groups to come together to share insights and perspectives on how we can better engage with those experiencing vulnerability. At the 2021 ASFA Conference, TAL reflected on stories of the vulnerable in our community with industry leaders representing First Nations Australians, people from refugee and migrant communities, and those living with mental health conditions to consider how our industry can better support them.