Aligning evolution with our values
Fiscal 2019 was highlighted by several major advances in deploying the organization’s strategy, with four key areas as our top priorities:
- Alignment with IFRS 17 (International Financial Reporting Standards);
- Growth of our distribution footprint across Canada;
- Accelerated digitization of our service offering;
- Our mutualists’ client experience.
The new IFRS 17 accounting standard to be applied in 2023 will forever change the accounting approach for insurance. The impacts of the new standard are far reaching and complex. And application of the standard requires the Company to expend considerable efforts. In both human and financial terms, the new international standard entirely revamps the actuarial and accounting approach of insurance companies, right down to their financial statements presentation. Humania Assurance saw this major project as an opportunity to also upgrade its accounting systems. Throughout the year, the Board of Directors, and the Audit and Risk Management Committee in particular, closely monitored progress on this challenging and costly project. Implementing these modern and flexible accounting systems is a logical fit with the Company’s accelerated digitization initiative.
Growing our distribution footprint across Canada is a development priority and the acquisition of Tour+Med’s assets in July 2019 was a notable achievement. Tour+Med is a renowned player with a recognized brand and a high level of policyholder service in the travel insurance market across Canada.
Both the individual and group travel insurance markets show high short and medium term potential. Demographics and consumer travel spending habits, combined with Humania’s ability to innovate with products, processes and technologies, are expected to drive high growth prospects for the Company.
The Company continued its accelerated technology shift. Web conversion of our individual insurance product business lines met expectations. The new digital products are promising and will be delivered on schedule. In addition, they are easier to adapt and customize, which makes it possible to define certain target markets with greater agility or build close relationships with more specialized distributors.
As a mutual insurance company, Humania puts insureds/mutualists front and centre across product development, policy writing, client service management and claims management. As a result, fair treatment for consumers, client experience and protection of personal information are constantly top-of-mind in our actions and decisions. Humania Assurance is committed to providing clients clear and complete information, high standards of fair and equitable treatment for consumers, timely claims settlement, and strict protection of personal information.
With a view to sound governance, over the past 12 months, the Company focused particular attention on integrated risk management. The Board of Directors continuously monitors and evaluates the management framework, which includes risk identification, assessment, monitoring and mitigation measures. Ethics and governance, investment strategy management and human resources are also core priorities for the Board of Directors and its committees. Each committee rigorously and diligently completed all of its particular tasks and controls. This document contains the report of each of the committees.
I would like to thank the members of the Board of Directors for their dedication, their specialized expertise, their high degree of preparedness and their engagement in the various committees and meetings of the Board of Directors. Their deep commitment to Humania Assurance is an additional asset to our Company’s success.
The success of a business like Humania rests first and foremost with its employees. At Humania Assurance, we call them collaborators. Throughout the year, their dedication, enthusiasm and diligence were remarkable. Despite the significant adjustments in work processes and individual responsibilities, our collaborators are always quick to meet the challenges of change head-on. I would like to personally thank them for their unstinting and vital contribution to our success.
On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would also like to highlight the work of Mr. Michel Côté, who left the Board in April 2019. Mr. Côté served as a Director for more than 22 years. He has my sincere gratitude for his significant contribution and outstanding commitment since his first term began on March 1, 1997.