By Herminia S. Jacinto
OUR lives have changed over the past 14 months, counting from the first lockdown in 2020. We had to learn numerous new ways of conducting our daily activities. Children had their classes at home as their parents were also working from home. The internet providers and sellers of laptops, cellphones and other devices experienced a sudden surge in sales — more than the average sales for the last five years. Online sales were the way to go. Anything and everything could be bought online, including insurance.
Insurance companies had to set up or improve its websites, databases, portals and everything that has to do with selling its products online. Traditional selling practices continued but were greatly hampered by the lockdowns and imposition of strict safety protocols. Agents and other intermediaries had to reinvent themselves to cope with the new way of selling. We have a very active and robust agency force both in the life and nonlife sectors. They represent the various insurance companies and have to pass the qualifying examinations given by the Insurance Commission. These intermediaries are either the insurance agents or insurance brokers as defined in Title 1, Chapter 4 of Republic Act 10607 otherwise known as the Insurance Code of the Philippines.