AFM Guide to the GDPR, October 2020
In 2018 AFM formed a working group to produce a guide to implementing the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The guide was well-received by members in preparing them for the step change in data protection regulation at the time. Two years on, the framework has continued to evolve, and the UK Government has added further legislation, both to support GDPR and in advance of the end of the Brexit transition period. The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has also been active and supported industry in interpreting the standards.
Given the above, we have revised our Guide, to incorporate our understanding of expectations today, and to provide more insight into current good practice. The Guide can be downloaded here.
Why cooperatives and mutuals can help “build back better” post-Covid
Diverse forms of ownership are necessary to help re-build after the Covid pandemic, says a new report.
The Rebuilding Business for Society report–compiled by a group of co-operative and mutual trade associations–says they can play a leading role in reinvigorating communities, especially those left behind by economic or social change.
Three key approaches outlined in the report include:
- Creating an enabling environment for forms of business ownership beyond shareholder owners
- Providing an option for businesses that are seeking to recapitalise after the Covid pandemic to introduce employee or customer ownership, including repaying Government support out of future earnings
- Supporting community-led economic development, particularly in the hardest-hit regions, to engage local people in incubating new forms of wealth creation which would support the Government’s ambitions to “level up” different regions.
For more, read the full report here.
AFM is committed to promoting sustainability.
We strive to show respect for the environment and promote a broader sustainability agenda through our professional activities and interaction with members. Towards the end of 2019, we issued climate change guidance for members and introduced our online Sustainable Mutual Insurance Forum where members can highlight and discuss developments in the sustainability agenda.
We also aim to follow good sustainability practice ourselves, to reduce the environmental impacts of our activities as far as practically possible, and to help our members do the same.
To reinforce our commitment to do what we can to help protect the environment, we have set out our intentions in a Sustainability Policy.
Click here to view and download.
AFM NED Toolkit
In April 2019, we launched our revised NED Toolkit, following an extensive rewrite to incorporate AFM’s new Corporate Governance Code and the Senior Managers & Certification Regime. The new Toolkit is a long document – a pdf version of the Toolkit can be downloaded in its entirety here or, for those interested in specific topics only, we have created a more manageable interactive online version which allows readers to jump to, and download, specific sections. Click on the image below to open the interactive document. We have also developed a short form, themed version of the toolkit focused on Risk, which can be accessed here: AFM NED toolkit.Risk
AFM member staff survey 2018
In the summer of 2018 over 600 employees from across AFM members participated in a survey, exploring issues including the nature of ownership, culture and leadership in our members. The survey followed a similar exercise in 2016, as well as a board leadership survey earlier in 2016.
A report on key findings is available to view here.
AFM members with 15 or more responses also received an individualised report. For more inforamtion, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is a discretionary mutual?
With a number of new mutuals emerging in recent years, built on a discretionary model, we’ve added a short explanation of how they work.
Read more here: Discretionary mutuals, v0120
AFM guide to implementing the GDPR (March 2018 version)
With the deadline for implementing the GDPR looming in May, the AFM Regulation and Governance Committee has launched a new guide to help members implement the GDPR.
The latest version has been reviewed by the ICO and is dated March 2018. We will continue to revise the guide over time, and it is available to download here.
The mutual sector’s contribution to savings in the NHS, the Welfare State, and to employers and individuals
New research, commissioned by AFM and produced independently by OAC PLC, has assessed the contribution made from health and protection providers of AFM to savings in the NHS and welfare state, as well as for employers and individuals, amounts to over £400 million a year.
The report, with a foreword from Rt Hon Frank Field MP, explores how the sector complements the work of the NHS and government departments, and how they might do more to bridge the gap between demand on welfare services and the constrained supply. Side effects are typical during long-term use of opioids but do not exceed 5% of the total number of registered therapies. The report also questions the wisdom of imposing Insurance Premium Tax on cash plan providers, where the tax collected is less than the expected benefits of exempting them.
To read the full report, click here.
Corporate planning and adoption of fintech in mutual insurers
Whitecap Consulting undertook a survey of AFM members in September 2017, to understand their approach to corporate planning in general, and in particular how they are adopting a fintech stratgy as part of their longer term planning.
You can download results of the survey here.
Views from the top
AFM Commissioned Independent Audit to interview Chairs of AFM member companies, to explore the culture of boards and to consider how their culture affects the running of the business and their impact on members/ customers/ staff. The report can be read here.
An interesting new report from the Norman Broadbent company, which specialises in board searches, looks at trends in CEO succession and Board refreshment.
The report states that "CEO tenure at member-owned businesses was, on average, 29% longer than at non-mutual financial services firms". It also saw improvements in the gender diversity of boards, and noted that a CEO was twice as likely to be female in an AFM member than amongst other mutuals- though amongst NEDs the rate is lower.
You can download the full report here.
Mutuals in Europe is the title of a new leaflet produced by European trade bodies AMICE and AIM, to raise awareness about mutuality. It is based on the 2012 study by the European Commission on the current situation and prospects of mutuals in Europe. The leaflet summarises the findings of the report in a very brief format in order to encourage readers to learn more about the situation of mutuals in Europe.
You are welcome to download and use the leaflet internally or with a wider group of stakeholders: Mutuals in Europe.