Energy Super has fashioned tailored insurance products for energy industry workers.
The fund has experienced an increase of income protection insurance claims, as well as TPD, prompting the creation of a range of policies to better meet member requirements.
Mark Williamson, Energy Super chair, explained the one-size-fits-all approach is poor practice. “Insurance is very important and needs flexibility to meet different members’ work-life needs. We regard it as an opportunity to differentiate ourselves,” he said.
Williamson has taken pride in providing TPD cover to those that previously might have found it difficult to obtain as well as a sliding level of income protection, depending on where a person is on their career path.
“Young workers view themselves as bullet proof and think they don’t need insurance,” said Williamson.
As a result, if someone joins through an Energy Super employer they are automatically entered into a scheme which increases cover as they enter new life-stages. The cover is designed to give modest income protection for apprentices, at low premiums, stepping it up incrementally so that increased cover is provided at the time when it is likely needed due to work, debt and family commitments. The option exists for additional cover, if a member wants to gain enlarged coverage.
Energy industry workers make up the bulk of Energy Super’s membership. The hazardous manual nature of certain jobs means that some have historically found it difficult to acquire appropriate TPD, according to Williamson. He cites linesmen (those who work on high voltage electrical cables) as a case in point. The fund has developed cost-effective insurance specifically for these members, ensuring they can be covered. Those in an office or other lower risk environment may be eligible for coverage at a lower premium, reflecting the funds philosophy of avoiding a one-size-fits-all approach.
“We have a forward dynamic – the aim is to make group life insurance more sustainable,” said Williamson.