Brokers value to society

31 January 2022

More than half of brokers say making a positive contribution to society is a priority

More than half of brokers (55%) say making a positive contribution to society is a priority for their company, according to new research by Ecclesiastical Insurance.

The survey1 of 200 brokers reveals the majority of brokers believe making a positive contribution will enhance their reputation among both customers (58% agreed) and employees (61% agreed).

However nearly three quarters believe the insurance sector needs to contribute more positively to society to rebuild trust.

How brokers contribute to society

The specialist insurer carried out the research to understand how brokers are contributing to their communities.

It found the top five ways are supporting a charity (61% rising to 97% among national brokers), sponsorship of a club or team (46%), providing work experience opportunities (37%), membership of a business forum (35%) and partnering with a community group or school (24%). One in five brokers are not doing anything specifically to support their communities.

One in four brokers will contribute volunteering days this year, rising to 71% among nationals.

A quarter of organisations have a charity partner, rising to 59% among national brokers. Most brokers (48%) choose a local charity to partner with, followed by a cause close to the hearts of employees (26%) or a well-known national charity (24%). Health charities are the most popular followed by children and young people and community.

Among brokers with a charity partner, support tends to be through company fundraising (84%), staff volunteering (54%) or match funding (48%).

Making a difference

When asked the motivation for contributing to society, making a difference is the main driver (71%), followed by giving something back to customers (49%) and enhancing reputation (42%). Building a business network was cited by a third of brokers (31%), while one in five (22%) said employee engagement was their motivation.

Ecclesiastical Insurance Group is the UK’s fourth largest corporate donor, having raised almost £100m for good causes over the past five years. The findings have been released to coincide with this year’s launch of Ecclesiastical’s Closer to You scheme, which see grants given to selected brokers. The scheme has seen £550,000 given to good causes since it launched six years ago.

Adrian Saunders, Commercial Director at Ecclesiastical, said: “The majority of brokers recognise the importance of contributing positively to society. There are a number of reasons why brokers want to give back, whether it’s supporting a personal cause or making a difference in their communities. Whatever the motivation, it brings them closer to their customers and employees and that can only be good for business.

“We know, from our own experience as the only financial services group with a charitable purpose, that the positive impact we’re making to communities motivates and attracts staff and resonates with our brokers and customers. We want to demonstrate that it’s possible to be commercially successful while giving something back to society.”

The research also revealed that a third of brokers are looking for support and guidance to help them to contribute more positively to society.

Adrian added: “Our research shows that brokers are already engaged in a range of positive activities, but at the same time they told us that they would welcome tools and support to help them do more. For many, they want more insight into how best to engage with community and charity groups and support them in the most beneficial way. We have produced a guide for charities and businesses called Corporate partnerships and Covid: lessons from the pandemic, which draws on insight from leading charities to provide advice and guidance on how to make the most of working with a corporate partner.”

1 The survey was commissioned by Ecclesiastical Insurance and conducted by FWD with 200 UK brokers during September 2021.