At ERS, we understand that relationships are key when placing Fleet risks, whether straightforward or complex, collaboration is needed with you and your clients to fully understand specific business needs ensuring the right A+ rated cover is offered.

And that’s why, at ERS you will always have access to experienced Fleet underwriters who are available to discuss every risk.

So, we thought we’d give you a chance to get to know one of our Fleet underwriters, Charlie Dickson…

What first led you to a career in fleet motor insurance?

I left university with a degree in biology and, whilst it was a great experience, it would take another 3/4 years of further post-grad studying before embarking on a career and I wanted to get out and earn. My sister worked in the insurance industry, and she painted a picture of glitz and glamour and encouraged me to apply for an entry-level underwriting assistant role at QBE in Chelmsford. Ultimately though, I wanted to work in the city, and I worked my way there.

How has your career progressed since being with ERS?

It has been great working alongside some of the experienced underwriters at ERS, there’s always something new to learn. My prior experience was working with a small panel of brokers underwriting from a box at Lloyd’s which is a very submissions-heavy process. As a New Business Underwriter at ERS, I review new business submissions but also help to ensure we develop long-lasting relationships with our broker partners.

Why do you think ERS is such a good partner for fleet brokers?

Three things stand out for me; our speed to respond to brokers, the empowered, knowledgeable underwriters in our team and the strength of our proposition in a market where we are looking to grow.

Having worked at other insurers in the fleet space, ERS is in a leading position to service brokers. Our book is incredibly robust now, meaning rate stability and giving consistency to our clients and brokers. We have good internal processes meaning quick decisions and a smooth experience for all stakeholders.

What’s the benefit of brokers having direct access to a fleet underwriter?

The benefits are massive. Brokers have access to a dedicated team of underwriters who look at every risk that comes in allows us to build closer relationships and makes it much easier to trade and place business, giving each risk the consideration it deserves. Each fleet underwriter wants to see their broker develop their book of business, so broker ownership is an essential part of the underwriter’s role. Reciprocal support is massive in this industry and can only be achieved through developing strong relationships.

Has the Fleet market changed since the pandemic?

A simple response – yes, most of the market is now under-priced. Fleet in general has always been competitive, but even more so of late. During and after the lockdowns we have seen competitors giving a lot of credit in their pricing to the artificial and short-term improvement in claims performances. As the economy opened back up, traffic volumes returned to normal, meaning claims frequency is returning to its previous level. Not only that but coupled with supply chain issues, which are affecting all sectors, are having a significant impact on claims costs. It’s evidently in ours and our customers interests to try and contain these costs, but inflation is currently impacting everyone. We are certainly seeing that in claims costs which is putting further upward pressure on premium in addition to the correction which a lot of the market already needed. Inflation is certainly the word of the moment!

Has our approach to underwriting Fleet risks changed since the pandemic?

I guess you could say we have been a little more careful in deducing the expected claims costs of our insureds going forward. Ascertaining whether the lockdowns led to an artificial, short-term improvement in claims costs or whether the insured has indeed taken tangible steps to improving their fleet risk is evidently key to stable pricing going forward. We do consider every risk on its own merits and pride ourselves on finding the right solution and price point for our customers, minimising difficult conversations with our brokers and customers in the future. We see ourselves as an incredibly stable fleet partner for brokers.

What’s the future for EV Fleet insurance and how is ERS enhancing its Fleet product to accommodate electric vehicles?

Electric vehicles were a rarity only a couple of years ago but it’s becoming more common to see them in vehicle schedules. We have an appetite to write electric vehicles and have an underwriting strategy in place to ensure risks are priced adequately and appropriate cover is in place. We are also accumulating plenty of data on electric vehicles to ensure we continue to understand our exposure have also amended our policy wordings appropriately.

What do you enjoy getting up to outside of working hours?

Watching my beloved Southend United (though arguably that is more of a punishment), playing golf and cycling.

If you weren’t working in fleet motor insurance, what would your dream job be?

I can’t go cliché with footballer, can I? I guess anything fast-paced and varied would be enjoyable. I’m sure being a doctor would be incredibly rewarding!

Do you have a fleet risk you would like to discuss? Contact our team today on 0345 602 5809 or

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