Santam has just premiered its first app called Be Safe, open to all consumers with an iPhone or Android phone. This multi-purpose app allows users to invite ‘guardians’ to track their journey (be it while jogging, cycling, on the daily school run or out and about) as well as log an accident and incident report if things go wrong. There are also a number of additional features particularly geared towards Santam policyholders and brokers.

Accident and Incident Santam

The first feature works by allowing the user to choose an activity, and then enter their starting point, destination and the estimated trip duration. They are then invited to nominate ‘guardians’ to monitor their progress. If the ‘guardians’ don’t have an Apple or Android phone, they will still receive sms notifications at the start and end of the user’s journey.

The second feature, the Accident and Incident Report, guides you through a step-by-step process to report, document and submit an accident and incident report directly to your chosen insurer in minutes.  To take the example of a motor vehicle collision, the app enables the user to scan the barcode of a vehicle’s license disk and then it populates the report with the essential information. The user can also take audio statements and incident photos. The app additionally allows users to locate the closest police station and Santam drive-in centre to start the repairs process.

An additional feature aimed at brokers and policyholders allows brokers to update their details via the relationship manager on the Santam website and the details are then fed through to the app where users can search for a Santam broker and view their details. Policyholders can also link to their Santam policy or access Santam’s contact details via the app.

“What is fantastic for brokers of course is that they are now in a position to really market themselves to consumers where consumers can go onto the apps, look for a broker and see what services they are offering. This really promotes the value of the broker,” Donald Kau, Santam head of corporate affairs, tells RISKSA.

Nathan van Rooyen, Santam’s head of digital marketing, demonstrated the app at a media event held in the Cape Town Company Gardens today. “The challenge we had as a team was to develop an app that can demonstrate the value and the brand position that Santam has been talking about in their marketing campaigns over the last few years,” Van Rooyen says. He believes they have achieved this with the app that integrates various features to add value to the end user.

“Obviously in the financial services, you are always concerned with protecting customer data. To protect customer data and comply with the relevant legislation, there is a log in process required every time you access the app. Consumers are also protected because they have to invite ‘guardians’ to track their progress,” Van Rooyen tells RISKSA.

He adds that the Be Safe component of the app is useful for parents, showing the press a television advertisement aimed specifically at fathers with teenager daughters. “You can’t be overprotective as a parent today; only protective,” Van Rooyen says echoing the sentiments of Santam’s television campaign. However, he points out that parents would still need their children to agree to activate the app. “The best way to achieve this would be to slap it on as a condition,” he adds, speaking from his own experiences as a father.

Radio and talk show presenter Liezel van der Westhuizen gave a live demonstration of the app, which had been tracking her progress to the event, and jogged into the Company Gardens restaurant to share her views and conclude the demonstration. As an outdoor enthusiast and avid mountain biker she says the app is ideal for her.

“It took only a couple of seconds to load onto my phone and used hardly any data. For me, who often rides alone, I can let my family know where I am. Even when I am driving to the Eastern Cape this weekend, I can let my parents know that I am driving with Santam’s app” she says.

“The app can also be used in a variety of other situations – to keep an eye on you when you are out and about or on the neighbourhood watch, ” Van Rooyen tells RISKSA.

He says he will be using the app himself at the Two Oceans Marathon over Easter weekend: “Often when I do a marathon, my wife expects me at the finishing line at a certain time, but it takes longer than expected. With Be Safe, she can be more certain of the time I will arrive”.

Currently there are no set plans to release the app onto other mobile platforms.

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