The COVID-19 pandemic — a never-anticipated business decelerator has entered the fifth month, impacting all business that rely on social interaction, negotiation F2F, explanation with demos, e.g. travel, hospitality, BFSI, Healthcare, etc. Not surprisingly, the Insurance business has been hit hard, given that insurance broking is all about advising and consulting and driven by friendly guiding rather than social distancing, which is the current mandate.
Going the extra mile
Here are some ways brokers can battle and overcome issues of the present scenario:
- Becoming a trusted advisor to the clients in times of turmoil by going beyond the call of duty and take proactive steps to help clients looking for advice. Some vulnerable client groups need special help e.g. nursing homes and long-term care facilities need to be protected from lawsuits arising out of the crisis.
- Product coverage changes and helping carriers in new product design that will minimize losses in WC, biz interruption, event cancellation and such other risks which have high vulnerabilities from coronavirus.
- Providing risk management assistance — Brokers work in complex situations, providing insights to customers and carriers both, assessing unique risks, being flexible and collaborative for coming up with a consensual decision and being on the same page with the underwriter.
- Providing support for risk prevention and mitigation — Brokers have a new role of risk control by educating the insured, helping loss prevention by policy wording alterations, workplace preparations to reduce exposures, employee training, mentoring and change management communication programs.
- Enabling WFH model by using portals, mobile interfaces with high security to counter data breaches. This will build ability to perform customer remotely using rich customer data for accurate need analysis for MSME’s, group coverages to (corporates and other non-corporate businesses).
- Move to lower cost structures — providing value added services, using technology tools like AI, Analytics, to
- Carriers — view/predict exposure and plan for claims management, check coverages and help in processing claims with COVID 19 tagging wherever applicable
- Insureds — tools for risk prevention/ risk exposure assessment e.g. cyber risk, data breach, etc.
In this turmoil created by the COVID-19, the economy broking business is undergoing a disruptive transformation where innovative technologies will play a big role is creating a new target operating model that will be more “efficient” and have a “human touch” in execution. For decades, the ecosystem has lacked the proficiency of multi-party dealings involving carriers, brokers and insureds. Now though, the disruption could result in a focused vision and common architectural paradigm to enable Large/ Wholesale brokers, Retail brokers and MGA’s to sell using technical info, processes such as New Business acquisition, Risk placement and Customer servicing.
Role played by technology
Brokers will encourage clients to use their risk management services and help clients deal with potential exposures, while protecting their staff and residents from pandemic exposures. The role of technology is key here and prudent brokers will implement technology that will achieve three goals i.e.
- Build customer intimacy
- Enhance the ability to consultatively sell by personalizing the journeys, and
- Reduce manual tasks, decreasing cost and effort
This can be done by implementing AI-based cognitive solutions with chatbots and workflow tools to provide differentiated customer service. Using Machine Learning and Advanced Analytics, brokers will derive deeper insights into their customer portfolio to evaluate the risk profile of clients, using data from multiple internal and external sources. Thus, customized solutions delivered by the AI engine to solve mundane tasks like “extracting information from proposals, “verify and validate info for completeness and accuracy”, “prefill missing fields”, “collate geospatial data”, is the way to go.
By commissioning technology levers, brokers can lead the way with customers, carriers and service partners in delivering agile processes, improved customer experience and a culture of trust, transparency and convenience.
In my subsequent blogs, I will draw on my experience and try to share pragmatic insights, uncover hidden risks, and provide innovative solutions on various aspects of Insurance transformation in the COVID-19 era.
Stay tuned for COVID-19 Impact Series: The New Insurance Economy — Challenges and Solutions
- COVID-19 Impact Series: Property & Casualty Insurance Revisited
- COVID-19 Impact Series: Growing Life & Annuity business in crisis times
- COVID-19 Impact Series: Healthcare transformation using IT
- COVID-19 Impact Series: Navigating the Turbulence in Reinsurance
Visit LTI’s Insurance page to find out more about our capabilities in this vertical.
AVP — Leader for Insurance, Consulting and Transformation, CST
Vijay has 25+ years’ experience in management consulting and delivery of transformation projects using SMAC, AI, IOT, Block Chain and other innovative digital technologies. He’s a Post Graduate from Delhi School of Economics, AICWA, AIRM (UK), and AINS and LOMA (US) Certified. He has consulted with CXOs of Fortune 500 insurance companies across 30+ countries, delivering transformation in the areas of distribution, new business & Underwriting, policy owner servicing and regulatory compliance, including data privacy and solvency-related areas.