Chairman's Statement 2014
As we conclude the first year of a single operational UM mutual the benefits are already tangible to our Members in the delivery of substantial refunds of unused surplus contributions. The Board was able to earmark £1.9m as refunds and issued payments before the year-end to renewing Members. This feature is exclusive to the mutual and qualification is not dependent upon an individual institution having low claims. Those Members selecting all classes of indemnity saw the highest refunds.
Resilience is the watchword of the mutual’s risk retention structure and periodically this is tested and proven. Periodically the mutual experiences a spike in the claims it accepts from its Members either due to exceptional single incidents, the sheer number of claims or a combination of both in the Indemnity Year. This activity, whilst not unexpected, is difficult to forecast and accordingly the Board has consistently taken a prudent view and builds the reserves of the mutual in anticipations of such happenings. This year we will be allocating a portion of the reserves to meet accepted claims in the general property class of indemnity.
Whilst the results reflect the high property claims by value for the year, importantly Members’ rates have not been subject to adverse change for the new year, continuing the commitment to focus on best value for our Members.
Our commitment to strengthening staffing levels ahead of demand has been fulfilled in the recruitment of staff during the year primarily in the claims handling section where retirements have allowed us to diversify and strengthen skills to future-proof this critical element of our service provision.
I am delighted and encouraged to see new Members join the mutual; our Members are our most important marketers and the confidence evidenced in Member retention and expansion is testament to the concept and simply ‘getting it right’ – not once but consistently.