Nick Ford on November 29, 2016
In my last post I spoke about the importance of starting small with your digital initiatives by bringing existing insurance products online with self-service portals. Once this online insurance portals strategy is in place, your customers can immediately start to benefit from your efforts while your business streamlines operations and strengthens customer relationships and loyalty.
But it doesn’t end here. According to Forrester, the answer to loyal insurance customers is for the organization to become customer obsessed. This means constantly working to understand and serve your increasingly empowered customers. The industry is full of new start-ups, or insurtechs, that are customer centric due to the ability to innovate rapidly with new insurance technology such as low-code platforms. Insurance companies need to innovate like these insurtechs and put the customer at the center of their products and services in order to stay relevant.
Customer-obsessed organizations are all about delivering software that delights their customers, that goes beyond their expectations. But customers often have a limited view of what is possible. This is why insurance organizations need to become insight-driven businesses. An insights-driven business harnesses and applies data and analytics at every opportunity to differentiate its products and customer experiences. Forrester forecasts that 40 insight-driven public companies and a horde of insight-driven startups are on track to grow from $333 billion in revenue in 2015 to $1.2 trillion in 2020.
To become an insights-driven organization and create the right experience for your customer, you need a combination of new technologies, insight into customer needs, and a platform that enables you to bring new systems of engagement from ideas to prototypes to production through rapid iterations in response to customer feedback.
Once insurers create online interactions with their customers by setting up self-service portals, they can then begin to leverage new technologies like AI, IoT and cognitive services to automate customer interactions, reduce operational costs, provide expert assistance, enable predictive customer engagement and improve productivity, all of which further personalize the customer experience.
Many insurers are already using Robotic Process Automation solutions, which incorporate AI, to efficiently capture, process and store data in order to analyze customer information and personalize policies. Online service PolicyGenius uses this intelligent analytics technology to identify and recommend innovative insurance products that best fit their customers’ needs.
And UK-based Spixii is building a mobile insurance platform that uses an intelligent chatbot to converse with young professionals about their insurance needs. The virtual insurance agent recommends suitable travel and home cover and identifies opportunities to cross-sell other insurance products.
When incorporating these new technologies into your organization, the goal is not only to create a better customer experience and efficient back-end organization, but to also create a value exchange with your customers. According to Accenture, 77% of customers are willing to exchange personal data for lower premiums, faster claims settlements or more tailored insurance coverage recommendations.
This data, in return, can enable insurance systems to enhance operational efficiency and enable creation of more personalized products. Once customers are comfortable providing data, you can experiment with what you ask for and how much data you collect. If you can continuously collect more and more data, you need to be able to test and learn rapidly to continuously provide value to your customers.
With these new technologies comes uncertainty and the need to adapt quickly to changing conditions and transform your business in different ways. In order to adopt a development process that allows for this rapid, low-cost experimentation, insurers need to approach projects that leverage AI, cognitive services and IoT with a willingness to fail often in order to figure out how to succeed sooner.
Insurance companies need the right set of tools and processes to foster this low-cost, high-value experimentation. Using low-code, model-driven development platforms enable business and IT to create a common language to allow for faster experimentation and greater collaboration. It is also important to have a platform that enables a feedback loop to continuously capture feedback from users that you can take back into the process from continuous innovation.
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