The Insurance Playbook: How Insurance Companies Can Start Their Digital Transformation Journey

Eugene Khazin

Principal and Co-Founder, Prime TSR

You shouldn’t have to convince internal IT teams and executives that digital transformation is not a risky endeavor. That shouldn’t be a debate. In fact, it’s their only choice. Not taking action is by far a worse choice.

I get it, change can be difficult, daunting, and risky. And improving company outcomes starts with weighing the pros and cons of transforming operations to stay competitive in a growing market. And the insurance industry continues to grow and evolve in the digital sphere.

Insurance companies can begin their digital transformation journey by simply taking inventory of the business and its intelligence tools, interoperability, and integration to a unified namespace.

From there, one can begin to challenge the core objections to digital transformation: why now, and how do we benefit from the data we have?

Digital transformation may be an overused buzzword in tech, but it is a necessary action—and an opportunity to create an entirely new ecosystem to help insurers scale. 

Customer experiences and expectations should be the driver for implementing digital transformation at an insurance organization. 

In 2021, 66% of insurance executives reported that the pace of digital transformation for their organization is accelerating. If you’re not part of that 66%, you’re miles behind the starting line. (Source: Accenture)

What Customers Want

Understanding that customers want instant gratification, immediate policy quotes, fast bill payments, and easy access to their policy data should be motive enough to automate and increase speed to market for products and offerings. 

The objective should be to provide a fast and simple experience with customer-facing functions.

Nearly 75% of insurance customers who attempt to purchase insurance online often have difficulty navigating the process and getting the help they need. (Source: Accenture)  

  • How can you convert that 75% into true business? 
  • How can you act on this time-sensitive opportunity without dropping the ball? 

Well-planned digital transformation strategies allow companies to take action and make better-informed decisions with the use of real-time raw and human data. All the while, understanding that the data is time sensitive, allowing for more agile responses to offset failures. 

 In order to sustain market share, insurers have to make efforts to: 

  1. improve agility
  2. deliver better services
  3. improve the customer and employee experience 

 

This means parting ways with, or at least modernizing, legacy systems and software that hinder efficiency and the way that customers access their information.

Lack of action toward transforming legacy operations can result in more consumer reports of poor service, delays in responding to requests, and through manual labor—perpetuating mistakes and confusion with sensitive customer data. 

The introduction and normalization of no-code and low-code development is one advantage of digital transformation that allows the offloading of some security, compliance, and governance tasks without sacrificing standards. In turn, this allows more focus on digital strategy and the development of a new business model centered around the customer: implementing the use of AI, predictive analytics, and improving the ability to provide aggregated claims data to the customer quickly.

New Revenue Possibilities

New operational developments can lead to new revenue outcomes. You can improve business value by automating tasks such as claims processing, underwriting, billing, and communications. This can produce positive outcomes in customer retention as well as referrals. 

For example, we’ve worked with Gallagher Bassett, helping to modernize their data capabilities under a new business model. Gallagher made an effort to allow customers to access their data and aggregated analytics faster. This not only improved customer satisfaction but also prompted a 6% increase in organic revenue growth. And with automating how they utilized their data, we helped relieve IT personnel of repetitive responsibilities like patching and other recurring tasks, freeing them up to focus on other business challenges and making data-driven decisions. 

Though the best kind of claim for customers is the claim that doesn’t have to be filed, automating the claims process, in the long run, saves time and reduces human error.