UTS Library

The IAG Expo



PR Company: 


Award Category: 

Award Type: 

Call Number: 

2004 C 9



Executive Summary: 

This submission details IAG's first-ever employee Expo, which was held at Wharf 8 in <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Sydney on 28 May 2004.  <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

People from all parts of IAG's business were involved in both the concept development and execution stages of the Expo, resulting in a high level of ownership outside the Communication team. The Expo gave our people the opportunity to understand and experience IAG's purpose 'a key driver of employee engagement' by illustrating and 'bringing to life' the customer and community journey.

Post-event evaluation showed that the Expo met its primary objective of building understanding of and engagement around IAG's purpose. The Expo will now form a permanent and integral part of the bi-annual CEO Forum, and the concept is also being utilised for other employee and customer events.

Situation Analysis: 

IAG faces a challenging external environment. Severe weather events in the past few years have brought insurance to the forefront of people?s minds. The collapse of HIH has meant a tighter regulatory framework. And, as the leading general insurer in <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Australia, IAG faces more public scrutiny than ever before. <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

Internally, IAG has changed significantly and rapidly in the last five years. Only a few years ago it was an insurance company primarily based in New South Wales and focusing on personal insurance (home, motor and niche) products.

After five years of acquisitions, IAG is represented in all States and Territories and is the leading general insurer in Australasia. After the 2003 acquisition of CGU, our workforce doubled in size to 11,000. IAG is now a company comprising many sub-cultures and functions ? from underwriters, branch and call centre staff, and assessors to climatologists, technology specialists and actuaries.

What unites these different cultures and functions is a common IAG purpose, and a common philosophy for the way we do things. In IAG?s employee survey for 2004, 78% of people said that having a meaningful direction and purpose was important to them. The challenge for IAG?s Communication team was to ?make it real? for our people so the purpose did not become a series of meaningless words on a page.

The Expo was part of the bi-annual CEO Forum, which brings together people from across the business to hear from IAG?s Executive team about operational performance and strategy, as well as IAG's purpose and values. Five percent (600 people) are carefully chosen to attend each Forum. Following the Forum, they return to the workplace as ambassadors, relating what they have seen and heard to their teams. 

This submission focuses on the expo component of the CEO Forum.


Research<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

We devised the concept of the Expo in response to a number of issues:

i)     IAG employee survey results on purpose and mission

In the 2004 employee survey, our people said that having a meaningful direction and purpose, or mission, was important to them.  While our employees told us that previous CEO Forums were successful in inspiring them to work towards achieving IAG's purpose, only 44% of these employees indicated that IAG's purpose provided meaningful direction for them.

ii)   CEO mailbox queries

A number of emails were received into the CEO mailbox from employees asking for clarification on what IAG's purpose meant for their role. 

iii)    Internal communication network

Feedback from the business to IAG's internal communication network told us that people were having difficulty understanding the company purpose. Being a relatively new organisation, with a number of recent acquisitions, employees had varying levels of knowledge about IAG.

Target Policies: 

Target Publics<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

Primary audience:

  • 600 employees nominated to attend as ambassadors for the business.

Secondary audience:

  • The IAG workforce of 11,000.

Communication Strategy: 

Communication Strategy and Implementation<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

Our strategy was to involve people from across the business in creating an interactive Expo that we added on to an existing event, the bi-annual CEO Forum.

i)          Planning

Taskforce Expo was a group of senior people nominated by each Group Executive, who together developed the overarching concept for the Expo.  They then led project teams and conducted research at each stage of the customer and community experience.  Along with the volunteers on the day, 95 people were involved in bringing the Expo together. This allowed us to achieve maximum buy-in from the different areas. (See Appendix A; item 1)

ii)                   CEO Forum and Expo event

iii)                 Following the day we mobilised the people from the Expo to act as ambassadors and spread the word about what they had experienced.  A highlights video containing the key messages was sent to each attendee to share with their teams.  (Appendix A; video 1) 

The table below features some of the highlights of the Expo.  Further photos from the Expo are displayed in Appendix A.  (Item 5)

Expo element

Supporting material


Customer Conversation Corner

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Expo video (Video 2 or item 4)

A visit to the Customer Conversation Corner allowed people to listen into typical calls from customers in our Australian and <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />New Zealand call centres. 

Claims Experience

Expo video

Appendix A; items 7,8 and 9

A live demonstration of three different claims experiences. The claims stories were relayed by volunteers from the business using video, audio and props.  The stories displayed the breadth of claims IAG handles.

Reducing our customers? risk ? workplace safety

Expo video

This display highlighted a partnership between NRMA Insurance and Carlton United Breweries.  People were able to investigate safety tips via an interactive CD Rom.

Prius cars

Expo video

IAG assessors were on hand to talk about having a Prius as their tool of trade vehicle.

Community exhibits - Assistance Dogs Australia

Expo video

This was one of the most popular exhibits in the community area of the Expo. Oscar the dog, and his trainer spent time telling people how IAG's donations helped them train additional dogs for placement with people living with disabilities.

There were also displays showing IAG?s internal research capabilities; the Reversing Visibility Index, shopping trolley crash tests and climate change.



Results  <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

Following is a table outlining how the key objectives of the Expo were met.




Obtain maximum input from the IAG divisions for the Expo project  this would help create ambassadors in the business and ensure a sense of ownership.

All IAG's divisions were represented on Taskforce Expo.



Increase internal understanding of the IAG business, brands, customers and purpose.

The Expo illustrated the end-to-end customer experience.  By way of the exhibits, the key planks of IAG's purpose were addressed.  (Appendix A; item 6 shows a map of the Expo)

In the survey following the event, the top three take-outs for the Expo all related to IAG?s purpose.

  1. community - commitment to help reduce risk
  2. claims where the promise is delivered
  3. expense/cost management

76% of those who attended the expo said that after attending they had an increased awareness of the IAG business. 

'I obtained a greater understanding of what the companies in the group do'    (Survey feedback)



Ensure all customer brands are represented.

All IAG brands from <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Australia and New Zealand were represented.



Tell the end-to-end customer experience story so people could experience the scope of our business.

Three different claims stories were featured. Appendix A; items 7, 8 and 9.  Staff related the stories using video, photos and audio.  The claims experience was brought to life using live theatre. (Appendix A; item 10)

In the post Forum survey, a more thorough understanding of the claims experience was the third most popular take-out.

'The claims process for commercial and workers' compensation was a real eye opener, especially the empathy needed.'



Illustrate the work IAG does in the community that is aligned to risk reduction.

The Expo included exhibits from the four areas of IAG's community work:

-         Injury prevention

-         Crime prevention

-         Emergency Rescue Services

-         Community Projects

'It gave me an appreciation of the size and diversity of the company and how important our sponsorship is to the community.



Ensure the key messages from the day are fed through to the wider workforce.

-         An email was sent to all 11,000 employees on the day to let them know what was happening.  

-         A highlights video was distributed to all 600 attendees, they then shared this with their teams. (Appendix A; Video 2)

-         All presentations, photos and commentary were loaded onto the Australian and New Zealand intranet sites.

-         Two stories and supporting photos appeared in IAG?s internal company magazines.  (Appendix A; items 2 & 3)



Ensure a good representation from IAG's community partners. 

Six groups represented. (Australia and New Zealand)

?The community groups that we support are many and varied.  My understanding and awareness of those individuals has increased.


?..brought a small tear to my eye to see the companionship and friendship towards others.



In order to further raise awareness of IAG's workplace giving program (charitable donations), include at least two organisations. 

Three workplace-giving charities were represented.

76% of people who attended indicated they would change their behaviour in some way as a result of attending the Expo.  Donating to workplace giving charities was the fourth most popular answer.



At IAG we endeavour to find unique and creative ways of communicating with our people.  The Expo was devised to illustrate the end-to-end customer experience and to connect people with our purpose and in the community. <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

Mike Hawker, IAG's CEO, was so thrilled by the event that he wrote a letter of appreciation to each person involved in bringing the day together.  (Appendix A; item 11).  The Expo was so well received that it will now be replicated at each CEO Forum so more people are able to share the experience.  Many senior managers from across the business have commented positively, and plans are underway to either re-use or re-create sections of the Expo for other events.  Sections of the Expo will be recreated for customers and shareholders to experience at the upcoming Annual General Meeting.   IAG's <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />New Zealand business is also looking to put together an interactive expo for their employees.