What do Batman, Spiderman and a Sword Swallower have in common?

 They’ve all had Income Protection sourced for them on The Exchange. (We really hope that Sword Swallower hasn’t needed to make a claim – yeouch!).

 What’s even more puzzling is an apparent disconnect between advisers and clients when talking about Income Protection. In an AMI Viewpoint 2021 study, 57% of consumers said they did not discuss or recall discussing Income Protection with their mortgage broker. Whereas 86% of mortgage brokers said they did discuss it.

Something’s not right. And neither are all the myths and misconceptions around what Income Protection is and who can access it.

Like this one:

Income Protection is just for executives.

That common misconception couldn’t be further from the truth, and we’ve got the data to prove it. From an available list of 1,809 occupations, over 1,400 occupations have been quoted for on The Exchange in the past six months alone.

Who’s getting Income Protection quotes?

 When it comes to knowing what’s going on in the Income Protection market, we’ve got it. Over 382,000 Income Protection quotes were performed on The Exchange in the first half of this year – up 20% on the last six months of 2021.

So who’s requesting all these quotes? Top marks to you if you guessed people in office-based roles and the medical profession. Bank staff are in at number one, while the real-life superheroes – doctors, nurses and teachers – all appear in the top 10 professions being quoted for Income Protection on The Exchange.

Top 10 professions quoted for Income Protection

The Exchange, Jul 2022


1 Bank staff
2 Teacher
3 Administrator – office
4 Doctor – health
5 Accountant
6 Project manager / Programme manager
7 Nurse
8 Administration manager
9 Manager – other
10 Manager – admin only


No real surprises there. A little further down the list, you’ll see more physical occupations – HGV drivers, builders and care assistants. Financial advisers, you’re in there at 41 (we’ll put that down to the fact you’re going direct to providers for quotes, don’t worry, we forgive you). It’s not until you get into the top 50 that you find more variation – delivery drivers and factory workers. You’ll even find the odd quote for Batman, Spiderman, Magician and Sword Swallower – because even superheroes need income protection. In fact, we’d say Sword Swallowers definitely do.

Who’s buying income protection?

It’s all well and good getting quotes for Income Protection but closing the protection gap will only happen if people are getting their applications in and buying it. The highest conversion of sales from quotes is among a similar group to the above.

Top 10 professions applying for Income Protection

The Exchange, Jul 2022


1 Doctor – health
2 Administrator – office
3 Nurse
4 Manager – admin only
5 Project manager / Programme manager
6 Driver – HGV
7 Teacher
8 GP – general practitioner – doctor
9 Accountant
10 Care assistant


Income protection is for all

The point is, it doesn’t matter if you’re a Doctor or Doctor Strange, Income Protection is there to pay the bills and support families when an individual is unable to work. It can also offer a whole lot more non-contractual benefits besides like access to mental health services, second medical opinion, legal advice, debt management and bereavement support – all of which can be accessed at any time (and are now easier to view and compare using the new Features service on The Exchange).

As an industry, we’ve got to keep talking about the benefits of Income Protection and shift the perception that it’s just for traditional ‘white collar’ jobs. That’s why you’ll see us supporting initiatives like Income Protection Awareness Week, why we’ll continue to bang on about the numbers or our latest development and why we promise to keep innovating to make it easier for advisers to sell more Income Protection to more people. Because, unlike Superman, no one’s invincible.


Jacqui Durbin

Global head of product – life, pensions and mortgages at Iress

Website: https://www.iress.com/software/life-and-pensions/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/iress

Listen and subscribe to the Iress Upfront podcast: https://Upfront.lnk.to/podcast