Canadian Underwriter

Q&A: Business Continuity in the Digital Age

May 19, 2020   by David Gambrill

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Do you have questions about how the novel coronavirus pandemic is affecting your business continuity planning?

Canadian Underwriter has answers.

We spoke recently with Steve Whitelaw, vice president of broker and industry partnerships at Applied, shortly after airing the first episode of our webinar series in mid-April, COVID-19: Business Continuity in the Digital Age. Our webinars examine how the pandemic has affected Canada’s property and casualty insurance industry.

Part 1 of our series discussed how brokers’ business continuity plans are responding to the unfolding drama of the global COVID-19 pandemic. That panel discussion featured IBAO president Joseph Carnevale, partner and managing director of sales at Brokers Trust Insurance Group Inc.; Graham Haigh, vice president of broker distribution at Wawanesa Insurance; and Steve Whitelaw at Applied.

At the end of the webinar, our panelists asked several questions about business planning and digital services in the pandemic age. We put these questions to Steve Whitelaw after the show. His answers to 12 questions will be featured in a special Q&A series over the next two weeks. A new question and answer will be posted each day. It is our hope that the series will help answer some questions brokers may have about business continuity planning in the digital age.


Here is today’s Q&A with Steve Whitelaw

Q: Do you believe industry needs 5G to make digital work?

(Editor’s Note: 5G refers to a new global wireless standard designed to connect virtually everyone and everything together, including machines, objects, and devices.) 

A: Having access to the internet is important, but providing choice to consumers is essential.

Insureds are demanding service how and when they prefer. Whether in person, or via phone, online or mobile app, ensure you are meeting those demands with omnichannel customer self-service options.

By implementing omnichannel customer service technology, brokers can meet the needs of insureds 24/7 by phone and internet when social distancing is required to enable safety for the insured, brokerage employees, and the community.


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