As we approach the end of 2022, we should remind ourselves that we started 2022 with a bang! This year has been fast and challenging for all of us, it’s time to pause and reflect on what we have achieved over the last 3 months.
- We launched a new brand that enhances the professional image of the organisation and members. Our new brand brings to life our core values – passion, professionalism, credibility, respect, and commitment.
- We also launched a new website. The website design provides members with improved content that supports professional and organizational development, the latest industry news, and easy access to membership benefits, with additional enhancements to follow. We encourage members to visit our website as a reminder about who we are as a collective and what we have achieved – fia.org.za.
- We have been working on the FIA Community Connect App (expected launch date February 2023). The app will enable members to connect and network with one another on important industry developments, as well as accessing quality CPD content and other important information from the website.
- The FIA hosted two flagship events – the FIA Advice Summit and the FIA Intermediary Experience Awards, in person, for the first time in almost 3 years. Each event attracted more than 500 attendees and we thank our members for their support. It was great to reconnect with the industry.
- Our Women’s Day Webinar in partnership with Liberty and Santam saw 800 attendees show up in support of strengthening the voice of women in business.
- Results from the FIA Intermediary Experience Awards Survey indicate members’ overall satisfaction with product providers has declined from 2019. The FIA has undertaken to engage with product providers on behalf of members to influence service standards and help alleviate the pressures facing member businesses. The FIA will be hosting a webinar for members in February 2023 to review the survey results from 2022.
- Following a comprehensive tender process, Cito Consult was appointed as the new FSP of the FIA Group Risk Scheme. Their appointment brings an enhanced product offering and improved overall sustainability of the scheme.
- We attended the African Insurance Organization (AIO) Conference in Nairobi, which was themed “Insurance and Climate Change: Harnessing the Opportunities for Growth in Africa”. The African Free Trade Agreement (AFTA) creates opportunity for South African brokers to expand their services on the continent. AFTA seeks to create a single market for products (including insurance) to deepen the economic integration into Africa and we are considering how we can widen our representation for members to benefit.
- Our first webinar on Transformation & Sustainability saw 300 members attend and feedback was positive. It featured an update from the Transformation Exco, which included Consumer Education, the Employment Equity Amendment Bill and ongoing developments at the Financial Sector Transformation Council (FSTC). Also discussed were the FIA Transformation Initiatives to increase the voice of black business.
- Brad Frank (the FIA Regulatory and Compliance Specialist) was appointed as an additional FIA representative at the RWC, which will enable us to gain direct insights and feedback into the developments of the Financial Sector Code.
- To improve our level of influence, the FIA was reappointed onto the FSTC board. The FSTC is a joint responsibility between the private sector and the line ministry responsible for the sector. Only Trade Associations as charter participants are funders of the FSTC. With that in mind, it is important that business are the ones providing oversight and ensuring governance over the operations of the FSTC.
- Following a very comprehensive process undertaken by the Board, the new strategy was approved, and will launch early in 2023. It will outline key priorities for the next three years, taking guidance from members at Advisory Council.
- In line with the new organizational structure approved by the board in August, Regional Administrators were promoted to Regional Coordinators and Sandra Snowball was promoted to Head of Membership.
- We were given the opportunity to present “the South African insurance (intermediary) market” to members of the World Federation of Insurance Intermediaries (WFII).
- Two strategic projects – the Market Intelligence Tool (which was launched at the Advice Summit in October) and the FSP Data Analysis – are well underway. Given what happened with Constantia Insurance Company and Health Squared, these tools will provide members with invaluable insights into the due diligence of product providers to enhance the advice process.
- Inseta have awarded funding to the FIA for Class of Business Training and Regulatory Examinations. We are in the process of finalising the project roll-out plan and will be launching the project together with Inseta in the new year.
Given the volume of regulatory changes and proposals over the last quarter, Samantha Williams, Head of Legal and Regulatory Affairs at the FIA has prepared a quarterly update on regulatory matters. I strongly encourage members to review the update as we have risk rated the regulatory matters to make it easy for members to identify high risk areas which will undoubtedly affect their businesses.
As we approach the end of yet another eventful year, we are grateful for your ongoing support and commitment to the FIA.
On behalf of the FIA Team, Board, Exco & Committee Members, we wish you happy holidays and prosperity in the New Year.