,Hong Kong

HSBC: Safeguarding customer wealth across various life stages

When Hong Kongers were recently prodded on what financial concerns kept them awake at night, their answers largely reflected their age group: Younger workers fuss about earning enough for mortgage payments and parental care expenses, mothers and fathers wonder how to save for their children’s tuition fees and older professionals worry about their retirement and medical expenses.

Some insurers attempt to soothe this breadth of worries with a generic call to save as early as possible, but HSBC insurance takes a step further by creating insurance solutions built to support Hong Konger's evolving financial needs as they progress through life.

HSBC Insurance uses robust strategic financial planning tools and risk profiling questionnaires to help understand customers various wealth needs in different life stages, such as protection for the family, education for their children, retirement, managing and growing wealth and legacy planning

Changing needs and life goals
“As people move through different life stages, their needs and life goals change,” says Candy Yuen, Chief Executive Officer of HSBC Insurance Hong Kong. Yuen explains that insurance is traditionally considered by many as a protection product, however, insurance actually helps accumulate wealth
to meet customers’ different life goals and requirements.

Yuen notes that HSBC Insurance produces ongoing literature and events to help uncover needs and gaps in trends related to customers' different wealth needs. For example, need-based brochures and sales tools were first developed in 2013 and further enhanced in 2014 to facilitate sales to engage and discover customers’ wealth needs. Moreover, special customer engagement programmes were conducted in recent years.

"This includes special events related to wealth needs to improve the overall customer experience and trigger their awareness in some wealth needs, such as retirement and education planning seminars. Experts were invited to share their suggestions and viewpoints with our audience," adds Yuen.
Apart from doing these events, HSBC Insurance ensures that its intermediate sales partner will regularly review customers' investment portfolios in order to make sure their performance is on track. This ensures, for example, that their education or retirement fund will not fall short of their plans.

HSBC Insurance works under the knowledge that Hong Kongers review their life protection or savings plan during certain life events like marriage, having children and securing their first job. This led the company to offer insurance solutions that are fluid than rigid, and customers are given the flexibility of an insurance solution that tries to best match their shifting priorities and circumstances.

“People should take advantage of changes in their personal circumstances to reflect on whether the protection they hold is still adequate for their needs,” says Yuen.“Insurance can provide more than protection benefits, through solutions that help people save for long term goals such as children’s education and retirement.”

Ahead of the pack
HSBC Insurance strives to keep ahead of the industry with continuous research studies to understand market trends, gather customer insights and create better insurance solutions. Staff training is also a key focus to market leadership. HSBC Insurance uses a combination of instructor-led training and online training on needs-based financial planning so its staff could better understand the needs of customers and align the solutions to their goals no matter which life stage they are currently in.

Yuen reveals that the key training focus for all HSBC Insurance sales staff is on the so-called “Customer Financial Journey”which spans from education, family protection, to retirement and legacy planning.

She says sales through deep dive training and coaching on the five steps (‘Engage’, ‘Discover’, ‘Recommend’, ‘Act’ and ‘Service’), staff are equipped with professional techniques such as lead generation, questioning skills, awareness building, objection handling, framing, bridging and conducting review – all of which are employed to figure out the best insurance solution for a Hong Konger.

Sales staff are even mandated to go through an eLearning module on “Customer Driven Solutions” to develop skills to better understand the needs of our customers.

To refresh their knowledge and maintain high professional quality, HSBC Insurance conducts regular operational and new product launch trainings. It has created a user-friendly learning and development platform for employees via HSBC Business School intranet, which is a single point access of training, to facilitate personal and career development and drive employee engagement.

"HSBC invests in employees as the expertise leads to our success. That’s why the HSBC Business School is committed to providing this learning platform so that all employees can access a range of opportunities to help them develop their career and take their expertise from strength to strength," says Yuen.

“Our aim is to ensure all staff put customers' interest at the heart of all they do, treating clients fairly and understanding their needs so we can provide suitable solutions and build long term relationships,” concludes Yuen.

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