Jim Penman, the founder of franchise giant Jim’s Group, has claimed he started Jim’s Insurance brokerage due to the “poor service” and antiquated IT systems he had witnesses from brokers in the past.
Penman told Insurance Business that he is looking to expand his Jim’s Insurance arm after it gained its broker licence February 2011. But he claimed the weak quality of his now broking rivals were a key motivation.
“We had been recommending [insurance] brokers for years but were discouraged by the poor service received, especially delays in treatment of claims and the sending out of renewals,” Penman told Insurance Business.
“At one time we were getting a call every week or two from franchisees asking us to apply pressure to get things done. We were also amazed at the limited use of IT by the brokers we dealt with, far less advanced that the systems we use to communicate with our franchises and clients, maintain customer service standards and so forth.”
Penman claimed by combining rigorous customer service systems and the most advanced IT with its brand awareness, it could provide “a first rate service to the public at competitive rates”.
Since obtaining its broking licence in 2011, Penman claims Jim’s Insurance now manages a book of over 5,000 policies.
“At present we're mostly providing public liability, personal accident and illness, tools, trailer, motor vehicle, commercial property and home and contents insurance,” said Penman.
“But we're starting to have success with motor vehicles and property. Our best areas to date are personal accident and motor vehicle. Jim’s Group franchisees often prefer to have all insurances with a single broker. This gives them one contact for any issue with leads, billing and insurance, and they can also contact me directly by mobile or email.”
Penman added the firm is working on a new website for Jim’s Insurance and he hopes the insurance broking arm will be the group’s “largest and most profitable division within three years”.
According to a recent BRW feature on Penman, Jim’s Insurance is already onto its fourth boss since launching just over a year ago, with Penman’s son, who had no experience of the insurance industry, one of the departed bosses.