At the moment a policyholder is filing an insurance claim they are at their most vulnerable. They need your help and this moment will define their relationship with your business - and whether they will recommend you to anyone else - more than any other. In a nutshell, if you want an improved NPS, you should be rethinking your insurance claims processes. And that means going digital.
Recent figures show that the overwhelming majority of insurance customers prefer a digital insurance claims experience. A quick search online will bring up endless articles about how prudent adoption of digital technologies will determine future successes in this competitive sector. Yet some insurers are still being slow to go digital for their customers, despite the many proven benefits, including reduced costs overall and more efficient internal operations.
There are many perceived reasons for this reluctance to embrace a digital claims process. With so many stories in the press about AI and robotics, some businesses may be reluctant to engage with new technology in case it dates too quickly for them to see ROI. The truth is, nobody knows how technology will evolve but there are systems available today that help insurance businesses improve NPS, reduce operational costs and boost efficiencies – all with an eye on how to adapt and fit in with any future trends to come.
This article is all about dispelling myths. In reality, these are unnecessary obstacles to businesses engaging with digital technologies that could make a lasting difference to their customer relationships and ultimately, their profits.
Here’s why ‘going digital’ is easier than you think:
Myth 1: Digital Insurance claims solutions are too expensive
Secure cloud-based services are now available, offering the claims experience your customers will love are available to you today - and you only pay for what you use. No expensive dedicated servers, no desk-top applications, just a highly efficient claim reporting and data gathering online service.
Not only is the cost of digital adoption now a fraction of what it once was, the savings you will make by streamlining your processes will see the system increase profits right from the outset.
Myth 2: Setting up digital insurance claims processes is a huge project that takes months of planning
The most important piece of planning you’ll do is ascertaining what your customers want out of an insurance claims process. If you don’t know the answer to this one question before you start, you simply won’t get the results you’re after.
Agility is key. Customer behaviour is changing quickly, largely because of online players such as Amazon. This means that, to remain competitive, insurers must become more agile too.
Expensive, in-house digital systems that take months to plan and implement are in danger of becoming extinct before they get off the ground. Equally, hiring a large team of consultants to try and adapt legacy systems to cope in the new world can be expensive and will only get you so far. This is why we now recommend a ‘sprint’ approach to planning and implementation that allows for regular testing and tweaking.
A small team of people, working with a state of the art digital claims platform, and adopting an approach of incremental planning, trialling and implementation in stages offers a far better, more responsive approach to digitisation. You never have to commit to a single, year-long project. Instead, you can try, test and tweak as you go, rolling out fully once you are fully confident in the new processes.
At the end of each stage, come back to your original question: is this helping us give our customers what they want?
Myth 3: You have to hire in a whole new team of digital experts to build a new system
Why, as a business specialising in insurance, would you try to build your own IT system? Why not talk to digital experts who have spent years investing in and perfecting their systems expressly to generate the results you’re looking for?
A company whose sole purpose is to create a digital insurance claims platform such as the one you want will already have researched customer trends, analysed other systems on the market and learned from countless tests, trials, and iterations. Talk to these specialists. Systems exist and are already being used that can be fully functional in a matter of days.
Myth 4: It will take too long to train staff
A good digital claims system should need only a modest amount of training. It will have been designed to be used intuitively by customers uploading their claims data and evidence and by business people in your office.
The best systems minimise the length and cost of the claim life-cycle by making every step of the process simpler and by sharing information rather than duplicating it.
Myth 5: Any new technology is high risk – there are no guarantees it will work
Digital claims platforms are already established in the insurance industry and are saving some of the biggest global names millions every year.
Some of these have processed more than a million claims. And risk can be minimised by adopting the agile approach described earlier based on testing small improvements. If anything, the risk of doing nothing is greater.
Myth 6: Any new system needs to have AI built in fully from the outset
Artificial intelligence is in its early stages in the insurance market. And you don’t need AI to be able to make tremendous improvements to your service and efficiency, this can be achieved by adoption of simple digital approaches. Simply seek to adopt a digital platform that becomes a “digital spine”. This allows you to link to specialist AI vendors as their offerings mature – and adopt the same agile principles, moving forward in incremental steps based on successful testing.
This simple approach allows you to start offering your customers the claims handling experience they want very quickly. You could start improving your NPS and driving efficiencies today, while you think about your next stage of digitisation.