More than two years on, our strategic objectives of making ourselves relevant, modern and diverse and delivering relevant learning, engaged membership and insightful leadership to the profession remain unchanged. What has changed is the level of progress that we have made in bringing these objectives to life.
Our work has focussed on engaging our membership, not primarily through growing their numbers but through increasing the depth of their engagement with the CII as the quality of the interaction with the public is of critical importance in building trust.
During the year, we completed our extensive review of our corporate Chartered status designation, which was created 10 years ago. This involved an important conversation about “Why Choose Chartered?” We are delighted that this has resulted in a fully-refreshed “ethos,” which makes clear the importance of the public commitment that firms and individuals are making to competence, integrity and care through being Chartered. The scheme is not just about rules for member-companies but also about a set of deliverables from the CII and Chartered firms to make Chartered status real, engaging and forward-looking. The results of the review, including the new ethos, was fed back to members in April 2019 and Melissa Collett, our Professional Standards Director, talks in more detail about the consultation process and lessons learned later in the report.
We also remain committed to improving engagement with our individual members throughout the whole of their careers, not solely in the early phases when they are gaining their qualifications. We do this so that the CII becomes a lifetime partner to members. To that end, we have begun the introduction of societies to insurance, with the societies of insurance broking and claims professionals being launched in the period covered by this annual report. These are focused on breaking down the profession into communities that are relevant and that matter to the individuals working in them. Our aim is to create a broad church by attracting those from outside the immediate world of insurance, for example those at law firms, accountants and actuaries who work closely with our profession. In determining how these societies should operate, we have lent heavily on the expertise that we have internally at our successful Personal Finance Society. Mark Hutchinson, Societies and Member Marketing Director, talks in more detail about the rationale for the launch of the societies later in this report.
Technology and talent
We have also worked with our board to commit significant investment to greatly improve our technology. We have launched a new website and are at the start of rigorous work to update and upgrade our commercial platform for our members and customers.
Our sector faces an ongoing challenge of attracting and retaining the best talent in an increasingly competitive environment. We have increased our investment in the development of talent and skills with the introduction of the Aspire Apprenticeship programmes. These provide purpose-built and standardised training for firms to develop and grow highly capable apprentices. We have developed a productive relationship with the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education. Their next big project, where the Chartered Body Alliance is involved, is the new “T” levels, one of which will be for finance and accounting. Alongside these programmes, we are actively involved in discussing the future needs of the sector through the Chartered Body Alliance’s support for the “Financial Services Skills Taskforce.” We have also continued to develop the schools’ Discover Risk and Discover Fortunes programmes.
Making ourselves relevant, modern and diverse
We have also worked
with our board to commit significant investment to greatly improve our technology
You can take a 360-degree tour of The Insurance Hall at 20 Aldermanbury, London.
Financial Services Skills Taskforce
We are actively involved in discussing the future needs of the sector through the Chartered Body Alliance’s support for the “Financial Services Skills Taskforce.”
Internally, the pace of change has not slowed:
- We completed our office move, the rationale for which was covered in last year’s report. A breakdown of the proceeds and the uses they have been put to are shown in the Finance Report. The heritage website has also launched to members and the public during the period (insurancehistory.cii.co.uk) where you can take a 360-degree tour of The Insurance Hall at 20 Aldermanbury, London, and view the unique stained-glass windows and the collection of more than 1,500 Fire Marks formerly on display in the staircase of the building. There are also digitalised versions of hundreds of insurance-related documents and books.
- We have embedded the strategic measures shown on page 3 into everything we do, with a review of our progress against them included in all executive management team meetings. These have become the key performance indicators used in the comprehensive business plan prepared in the period.
- We have proposed a whole set of changes to our bye-laws to bring the governance of the CII in line with modern thinking and good practice.
- We have made significant progress on narrowing the gender pay gap through initiatives such as job levelling.
- We have upgraded our internal IT infrastructure to enable agile working for everyone.
We also have very clear plans for the year ahead. One of our major priorities will be our international engagement work with regulators and our affiliate institutes aided by the appointment of David Thompson as international director and the opening of a dedicated office in Dubai. We will also be implementing the results of the Chartered consultation; launching another society – underwriting; continuing our focus on building access and relevance through our Insuring Women’s Futures Taskforce and participation in the Pensions Advice Taskforce, Access to Insurance Taskforce and the Resilient Households Group. We will also be developing our Public Trust Index by providing members with highly granular, drill-downable information on their own performance.
It has been a year of strong underlying progress but there is still much to do. However, I believe that we now have the momentum to engage our membership in our drive for constructive change and through it, greater public trust.