WSB talks to Omnilife group risk sales manager Barry Waring about winning the Group Risk Provider of the Year award.
What does it mean to win this award?
It's great to have won the award this year. Omnilife have been in the industry for a very long time. In fact, we are one of the longest serving providers, with more than 30 years in the market. So to be crowned the champion for 2018 is a fantastic feat for us. It is our first award win with WSB and one we look forward to defending in 2019.
During my time with Omnilife over the past eight years, it is exciting to see our market perception change from a niche provider to what we are today - an award winning group risk provider. Across the teams, our heads are held high, continuing to deliver our exceptional levels of service.
Judges comment: "Omnilife is a plucky underdog focused on delivering exceptional service"
What do you believe sets you apart from your peers?
What sets us apart is our service. The personal touch, the way that it does not matter if the end client is big or small, we still deliver the same high standard of service. The teams here at Omnilife all follow the same approach: enthusiastic, honest and extremely hardworking. When brokers interact with us, they know we are a company that they can trust, and most of all, we are experts in our field as group protection specialists.
What are the key challenges facing your clients and how are you helping them address them?
There are a few, but one of the key challenges brokers face is communication of benefits. Challenges include, what is the most effective way to promote benefits available to employers and employees? What are the additional benefits, if any? What is the most effective communication strategy, particularly for support services such as employee assistance programmes? Most importantly, when can employees access the services available? We believe this to be crucial to engagement. Working with brokers, we are supporting them in the most effective engagement channels to reach out to end clients.
How will you continue to improve your services to clients over the coming 12 months?
Tough one here as I will be giving away all of our secrets! Let's just say 2018 has been a great year for us so far, with this prestigious award, and also a strong year for new business sales. This year has certainly seen us turn up the heat in the market. Now we are going to use this award to make sure the high standards we set ourselves becomes the norm in the market. Small steps, but we know we can make a difference.
The top stories this week were the High Court's decision to block the £12bn annuity transfer from Prudential to Rothesay Life, and a separate court ruling that 'raises the bar' for pension rectification exercises.
Guaranteed minimum pension (GMP) equalisation has soared to the top of pension schemes' to-do lists, with 58% stating it is a priority project, research from Equiniti has revealed.
Professional Pensions is holding its defined contribution (DC) conference on 4 September.