The findings of the Consulta 2016 National South African Customer Satisfaction Index (SAcsi) were revealed this morning, for which I duly girded my loins. The insurance sector - that ultimate of "grudge purchases" and fabled phobic to change - generally does not score well with satisfaction when it comes to economic crunchtime when consumers all over are tightening their belts.
I was pleasantly surprised. According to the SAcsi, customers scored the life insurance industry an overall 79 in 2016, up significantly from 77.3 in 2015. What was interesting to note was that banking was stable with a score of 76.5, while short-term insurance dipped to 75.8 from 77.9 in 2015.
In SAcsi's release, one life insurer stood out- Liberty, who saw their SAcsi scores jump 3.9 points to 78.1 and 85 - outstripping consumer giants MacDonalds, FNB and Spur among others. Other financial serivices companies mentioned who enjoyed significant increases were Old Mutual, Sanlam and Metropolitan.
This seems to bode well for an industry constantly worried about being budgeted out by the average consumer when volatility strikes- but whether or not 2017 will paint a similar picture, with all its downgrade chaos, remains to be seen.