Inspire spring 2023

The latest health and wellbeing news from Towergate Health & Protection

Welcome to the latest edition of Inspire, our quarterly newsletter, designed to keep you informed about issues and developments that are relevant to your business.

In this edition, we explain why older workers make highly attractive employees, bad budgeting advice masquerading as good budgeting advice, and explore some of the reasons you might not be sticking to your new year’s resolutions. Plus, our sister company shares the value of going ‘under cover’ on your protection, and we update you on the latest from the key insurers.


How to get and keep workers over 50

We’re seeing that many UK companies are facing extraordinary difficulty in recruiting skilled staff; as the pandemic prompted a lot of people – particularly the over 50s - to reassess what was important to them, many quit their jobs as a result.


But now that there’s a cost-of-living crisis in the UK, conditions that are thought to have prompted people into early retirement have changed, making it much more difficult for people to keep their expected standard of living while in retirement and living off their pension.

The fact that some early retirees might need to come back into the job market is the perfect opportunity for businesses to try and attract this age group, because this demographic bring a host of benefits to the workforce:

  • Higher rates of retention – on average, older workers report higher job satisfaction and are less likely to switch jobs, saving your business money they might otherwise have spent on recruitment
  • Experience – as they’ve been in the workforce for a long time, older people are much more experienced in all factors of modern working life
  • Problem solving – similarly to the above, over 50s tend to be much more practised at solving problems in the workplace
  • New ideas and opportunities – an age-diverse workforce is important for diversity of thought in the workplace.1

Figures released by the Office of National Statistics last year showed that of the 58% of respondents who would consider returning to work, the most important factors when choosing a paid job were flexible working hours (32%), good pay (23%), and being able to work from home (12%).2

A pay rise isn’t always possible

Enticing experienced talent to your workforce isn’t always a matter of offering a generous pay packet, though. Workers have told us as much, with research across the board revealing that employee benefits are a big consideration when an individual is preparing to accept a job offer.3

When it comes to workers over 50, they’re likely to find the most value out of the following benefits:

  • Income protection: this age group may be particularly concerned with benefits that will give their family security in the event that they contract an illness or injury. Income protection will ensure that the employee and their family are secure and can pay the bills even if they’re unable to work
  • Life assurance pays out a lump sum to the family of an individual who has died, alleviating financial pressure when they’re already going through a very difficult time.

Beyond family security, this age group will have been particularly affected by the cost-of-living crisis. Not only will some of them have been forced out of retirement, but they may also be struggling to afford health maintenance costs. The following benefits address this issue:

  • Cash plans provide partial or full reimbursement for health maintenance costs like dental check-ups, seeing the optician, physiotherapy, and more. The employer or the employee will pay a small fee each month for a policy that will help them meet their everyday health costs
  • Private medical insurance (PMI): the average person faces excessive wait times for treatment under the NHS, making PMI even more attractive than it did before. PMI allows your employees to get the help they need when they need it and skip the queues
  • Health screenings give an individual the most comprehensive view available into their health. This particular age group may find particular value in this benefit as they seek to live long and healthy lives.

If you would be interested in trying to make your company more attractive to your existing workers as well as prospective talent, we can help. Simply contact your Towergate Health & Protection consultant for assistance on how you can brighten up your benefits offering.


1. Advantages of employing and retaining older workers |
3. half of employees would sacrifice pay for personalised benefits, report reveals | People Management

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Avoid these bad budgeting tips

There’s no shortage of financial advice out there.

While it’s overall a good thing that people can have access to the information that they need to stay healthy financially, social media platforms and even some reputable legacy media platforms pedal bad money advice that sounds a lot like good money advice.


Below we explore some well-meaning financial tips that don’t quite hit the mark.

Bad tip no. 1: DIY it

To be clear, if there’s something around your house that’s broken that you can easily fix yourself, you should. Similarly, if you have a unique skillset that makes you particularly handy, there’s no reason you shouldn’t put those skills to use rather than pay for someone else to do it.

But when it comes to more complicated or more technical repairs, we shouldn’t always turn to Google or YouTube to find out how to fix the problem ourselves. Particularly if the repair falls into a niche category, trying to fix it yourself could end in making the problem worse and, potentially, even more expensive to repair.

Sometimes, forking out money to get something fixed properly is worth it. Besides that, it’s important to weigh up the value of your time against all the time it would take to fix, for instance, a broken door hinge.

Instead, put your energy into using money comparison websites to source the cheapest prices for whatever it is you need fixed rather than trying to DIY it and possibly making the problem worse.

Bad tip no. 2: stop buying coffee from coffee shops

This is a particularly pervasive budgeting tip that, on the surface, doesn’t sound too bad; it seems like it’s instructing people to reconsider spending money on something they can easily make at home.

Here’s why this tip isn’t all it seems to be. The first reason is that when people are advised to stop spending a few pounds on a cup of coffee a few times a week, they’re being told just that: to stop spending a few pounds on a cup of coffee a few times a week. But the behaviour that might motivate them to do so – like lack of preparation or not understanding the value of their money – is completely left out.

The second reason this is bad advice is that it’s misdirecting; if an individual is in dire financial straits and they happen to be someone who does buy the occasional cup of coffee out, there are likely other areas of their finances that require far more attention.

Bad tip no. 3: don’t talk about money

The idea that it’s rude to discuss our finances with others is a common one – but, similarly, advice instructing people to ignore this advice is also prolific, and it’s easy to see why.

This particular advice has different roots; some are societal, such as the idea that it’s rude to talk about such a personal matter and even ruder to ask someone else about theirs. But also, in different parts of the world, it’s actually illegal for employees to discuss their salary with other employees.

Fortunately, that’s not the case in the UK, but even when it comes to discussing finances with those in our personal lives, there’s a big taboo. Feelings of shame, inadequacy, and a sense of competition are all motivating factors in keeping this aspect of our lives quiet.

But perhaps it’s time for a sort of cultural reset on the matter. Human beings can learn valuable things from talking to their fellow human beings. Plus, if a friend of yours is in relatively the same socioeconomic boat as you are, it can be valuable to gain insight into how they’re handling their finances so that you can learn from them – and they can learn from you.

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Why you’re not sticking to your new year’s resolutions

Most of us start the new year with the best intentions – promises to ourselves to do better and be better, which some of us make concrete in our new year’s resolutions.

Unfortunately, only 38% of adults manage to stick to their new year’s resolutions until the end of January, according to figures seen in 2022.1


So now we’re almost at the end of the first quarter, have you managed to keep up with your new year’s resolutions?

Of course, not everyone who makes a resolution at the beginning of the year seriously sets about achieving it, which is fine.

In this article, however, we look at some of the reasons why a person who is earnestly trying to achieve their new year’s resolutions might find themselves failing, even as they’re trying to succeed.

Reason no. 1: motivation via negative emotions

According to psychologist and coach Taslim Tharani, one of the reasons we might be really struggling to keep up with our new year’s resolutions is because those resolutions are, “grounded in things which bring about fear, shame, regret or guilt.”2

Highly emotionally charged resolutions, then, like losing weight or exercising more, may be doomed for failure before you’ve even started.

This of course doesn’t mean that you can’t select those resolutions or be successful with them. You can, but just ensure that you’re understanding your goals through a positive lens, e.g., ‘Losing weight will be life-changing for me because my mood will improve and I’ll be able to play with my children/grandchildren more.’

Reason no. 2: you haven’t thought about sacrifices

The unspoken side of the coin to any new year’s resolution is what you’ll have to give up, or sacrifice, in pursuit of achieving them.

Maybe you never thought of what you’d have to sacrifice in the pursuit of achieving your goals, but it’s important that you do so that when you come up against them you’re ready, and aren’t so easy to give up.

To use the example above, where your resolution might be to lose weight, you might find that you’re really struggling to stick to your plan of eating healthily if you’re regularly eating out.

The solution here isn’t necessarily to stop eating out entirely because that isn’t realistic. Instead, make your sacrifice the type of restaurant that you’re visiting. For example, if it’s your friends or family you typically go out with, suggest a healthy restaurant alternative so that you can have more control over your eating habits and don’t succumb to having an unhealthy meal at the average restaurant because you have no other choice.

Whatever your resolution is, make sure that you’re thinking of what you may need to sacrifice in advance, so that you can plan ahead and, where necessary, steel yourself before they arise.

Reason no. 3: you’re forgetting what you have

According to the British Psychological Society, you shouldn’t forget about what you’ve got in the process of looking towards what you want.3

Chartered psychologist Audrey Tang says on the matter, “It’s great to know what you are aiming for, but take a moment to recognise what you have, because at one point those things were as much your goals as your new resolutions.”

Dr Tang continues, “Not only does gratitude help create healthy connections in the brain, which in turn make it easier to notice the positives in life, but by taking a moment to reflect, we may also notice we have a blueprint of how we’ve achieved things in the past.”


1. A third of Brits who set New Year's resolutions will give up on them today, study finds - Wales Online
2. How to stick to your New Year's resolutions in 2022 – and why they often fail | Metro News
3. The psychology behind making New Year’s resolutions stick | BPS

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Silent reviews: going ‘under cover’

Can you be certain that your existing insurance policies provide the right protection and, importantly, are competitively priced with limits and excesses?

The risk of not having the protection you need from any insurance portfolio has always been important, as has getting this protection at the right price.


But the current financial climate is bringing this to the forefront more than ever before.

This is why our sister company, Towergate Insurance Brokers, offer a process called a silent review, helping you to get the answers you need to the questions you should be asking when it comes to insurance.

What is a silent review?

A silent review can give you peace of mind and reassurance that the cover you have in place will protect you in the way you expect it to, should the worst happen. A silent review involves engaging specialists and insurance experts to undertake a full review of current insurance arrangements, without disrupting existing arrangements or making existing brokers or insurers aware that the review is taking place.

A silent review is particularly useful when business circumstances change, such as upgrading systems or operations, expanding, acquiring, or selling. Similarly, they can be of value if there have been changes to who handles the insurance, either at the company or the broker. Changes to claims trends may also warrant a review. If the insurances have just been renewed, a silent review can provide peace of mind, and, in some cases, identify important coverage issues that were not addressed at the last renewal.

What does a silent review entail?

A silent review will take into account trade process, risk management and health and safety procedures to ensure that positive risk features are reflected in the premium that is being paid.

Business, industry, and commerce moves at a pace, but we often find that insurance programmes don’t adapt or evolve to match these developments. For many years we have found that complacency and apathy in the insurance sector (amongst brokers and insurers) is rife, can lead to insurer opportunism, and leaves clients unnecessarily exposed.

Typical reviews will address the following areas:

1. Insurance cover – including terms, conditions, warranties, limitations and exclusions, as well as adequacy of the sum insured, liability limits, and excesses
2. Insured and uninsured risks, specifically looking at activities undertaken to ensure suitable coverage has been purchased
3. Insurance programme structure – understanding if there is an alternative way to structure your insurance programme that could bring added benefits to your business, including cost benefit analysis
4. Costs (premiums and fees)
5. Service – including risk and claims management support, plus policy appropriateness considering recent claims trends
6. Adequacy of programme against emerging/evolving risks, i.e. crime, cyber, and environmental.

From a risk support perspective, a review would generally include:

Claims management

  • Claims analysis, tracking and trending reviews
  • Positive risk mitigation
  • Reviewing any claims in reserve to ensure they’re still applicable.

Risk profiling

  • Valued by clients who consistently see cost benefits
  • Highlights to insurers what a client does, how they do it, the processes, systems, etc, and details the risks and exposures before highlighting/emphasising protections and risk mitigation measures
  • By articulating the positive aspects of the risk, Towergate Insurance Brokers is able to differentiate clients, remove insurer misconceptions, and generate optimal interest as well as ultimately improved terms.

There is no charge for silent reviews and there are no hidden fees.

Where can I find out more?

Please contact your usual Towergate Health & Protection consultant if you would be interested in a silent review, and they will put you in touch with one of our specialist colleagues at Towergate Insurance Brokers.

We understand that it can be difficult to break away from long-established relationships with insurance brokers. This is why Towergate offer silent reviews, which do not disturb your existing broker relationship or the insurance market generally.

This article is from our sister company, Towergate Insurance Brokers.

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Latest news from the insurers

Have you heard the latest from the insurers?

Here are the most recent updates from key providers Aviva, AXA, Bupa, Simplyhealth, and Vitality.



13 March 2023 - Two in five 55-64 year olds plan to move into semi-retirement before reaching state pension age

Research from the fourth edition of Aviva’s Age of Ambiguity study explores changing attitudes towards work and retirement accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic.

14 February 2023 – Almost two in five people in a relationship in the UK admit to ‘financial infidelity’

Financial infidelity includes deceptions like having secret credit cards or savings accounts, lying about debts or gambling, and hiding purchases from partners.


6 February 2023 – AXA UK gender pay gap improves for the 4th year running

AXA UK have said that they remain committed to improving diversity and inclusion and that they continue to introduce new initiatives to support this.

26 January 2023 – AXA UK signs up to Flood Re’s Build Back Better scheme

AXA UK are to provide flood-prone customers with access to property flood resilience measures under the Build Back Better scheme.


21 February 2023 - Low awareness of prostate cancer symptoms presents risks - as two-thirds have never been checked

The culprits could be a combination of a lack of awareness over symptoms and embarrassment about being examined by their GP.

16 February 2023 – Global business leaders still ‘binge working’ despite boost in flexible working

According to Bupa, global business leaders are continuing to risk their wellbeing and mental health with unsustainable working practices.


30 January 2023 – Simplyhealth pilots new rapid screening service

Simplyhealth customers will be able to search for MRI, CT, X-ray and ultrasound scans near them and book online in minutes.

25 January 2023 – Simplyhealth uncovers the nation’s paperwork panic

A new survey has found that people in the UK who have ‘admin tasks’ have four hours of jobs outstanding to complete.


9 February 2023 – Vitality strengthens its serious illness cover offering

Vitality has announced a number of changes to its serious illness cover that are designed to streamline its offering further.

9 February 2023 – Vitality transforms its income protection cover offering

The updated offering has been developed to provide protection products that meet today’s consumer and adviser needs.

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