Expert profile - “Several developments right now will impact heavily on the public sector.”

Tuesday 8 June 2021

What is your role and where do you work?

I am John Shaftoe, Managing Director of Maven Public Sector; I head up our team of specialists and liaise with our insurer partners and other stakeholders. While my base is in London, I prefer to be on the road meeting customers and their brokers. As we begin to move to a more normal situation, I am looking forward to meeting up in person again.

What is your expertise, specialism or main area of interest?

Over the last 40 years or so I have picked up a great deal of experience in claims, account management, risk management and latterly the delivery of insurance programmes. I am probably more of an allrounder than an expert in any one area. I am, however, most focused on ensuring essential covers remain available to the public sector and there is healthy competition for your business.

Is there a particular aspect of your work you are interested in or passionate about?

The best part of my job is being able to work with, and for, so many talented and dedicated individuals across the public sector and insurance industry. I have made many friends over the years and really appreciate the values of those who work for the public good. Having joined MMI in the seventies thinking I might stay in public sector insurance for a year or two, I am still fascinated by the diversity of risks and issues we face.

What are you working on currently?

We responded to the consultation stage of the Procurement Bill, related to the Green Paper, broadly welcoming the proposed reforms. It will be interesting to see what elements make it to the Bill, due to be introduced this autumn. Also, the ways in which insurers can deliver social value in the context of a financial service contract is a challenging area and is evolving quickly right now.

Another current topic is preparation for a new ‘better’, where we can work in a mix of virtual and face-to-face scenarios.

What topics and trends are emerging?

There are several developments right now which will heavily impact on the public sector. One is the public inquiry into the UK’s response to COVID-19, scheduled to begin in spring 2022. This has the potential to be very wide ranging and will involve councils in much preparation work, documenting their individual response and how that has been managed.

Following on from the tragedy of the Manchester Arena attack in 2017 and the call for Martyn’s Law, the Government has set out its proposals for a new Protect Duty, which will make it a legal requirement for public places to ensure preparedness for and protection from, terrorist incidents. The current consultation will no doubt help shape the forthcoming legislation. It will be interesting to see what the implications are for councils and any new duties of care that may result.   

In the meantime, data breach claims are becoming a problem for many public sector businesses with claims farmers seeing this as a money spinner.

We live in interesting times, with many other issues likely to require our attention!

John Shaftoe (john.shaftoe@mavenps.co.uk) is Managing Director at Maven Public Sector.

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