How Insurance Companies Should be Using Automation
By Jake Levant
Think of the insurance application process as a series of doors. Once a sales lead provides the information needed to process their information and retain them as a customer, insurance salespeople are dependent on a series of tasks that must be completed in order, and as quickly as possible.
« Quick Summary » This blog post will take a closer look at how insurers should be using automation to shift from the paper chase to focusing on the cusotmer relationship:
Breaking Down Barriers to Faster Document Processing.
Efficient Operations Through Improved Customer Service.
Shift Agent Time from Paperwork to Client Relationships.
The slower these doors are unlocked, the less likely it is that your applicants will reach the end of the process and become a paying customer. Unfortunately, the process of unlocking these doors is often slow, tedious, and overly complex. In many cases, insurance companies are racing against competing brands to process applications and convert prospective customers into existing clients, and slow and steady almost never wins the race.
What these companies need is an automation solution to open those doors faster, reducing the amount of time it takes to bind. A combination of automation solutions can unlock these doors faster than ever before, allowing documents to flow through processing without suffering delays that frustrate your customers.
If you're using manual processes to handle any aspect of binding P&C (Auto, home) or Life applications, you’re almost certain to be losing sales as a result. And you can also expect to lose ground to your competition: According to a report from the IDC, insurance industry spending on advanced technologies is expected to grow by 48 percent globally, resulting in a $1.4 billion market by 2021.
To keep pace with these changes, insurance companies should consider adopting automation solutions before they’ve fallen behind the times.
Breaking Down Barriers to Faster Document Processing
Automation creates efficiencies across every step of document processing, supporting insurance sales teams and closing deals faster. eSignatures can quickly be gathered without asking prospects to come into your office, or even scheduling to meet them at their home. This turns a process that could take hours, even days into one that gets resolved within minutes.
As supplementary information or other tasks are required, an automation platform can quickly notify customers when action is needed, without requiring hands-on involvement from an insurance sales staff member. And with easy-to-use, consumer-friendly software platforms, customers can quickly resolve these issues without support from sales teams, and without the frustration of trying to learn complicated software interfaces.
Even where manual documentation efforts are required, automation can still expedite processing by its impact on reducing the overall error rate on paperwork. Missing fields or misplaced information can be rectified by automation solutions before those items reach a salesperson’s hands, facilitating seamless processing that moves applications faster through processing.
Efficient Operations Through Improved Customer Service
Automation isn’t just a way of alleviating insurance sales staff of menial tasks. It also improves responsiveness to customer needs, while faster overall processing delivers faster service that can increase closed sales.
This efficiency can deliver tangible gains to adopting insurance agencies. A report from Accenture noted that a mere two-percent improvement in loss costs can improve bottom-line results for U.S. companies by a combined $11 billion every year.
Meanwhile, research from Deloitte examined a large insurance company that saw a 68 percent gain in productivity just by automating basic tasks. This productivity was boosted even further by improvements to data accuracy and regulatory compliance, resulting in a profound and immediate improvement to business operations.
The benefits of automation don’t end with new customer additions, either. Renewals remain a critical component of successful insurance business operations, and every single policy goes up for renewal periodically—in most cases, at least once a year. Automation can be used to process renewals for satisfied customers, while sales staff can then concentrate their efforts on retaining the business of current customers who might otherwise leave to get their insurance from a competitor.
Shift Agent Time from Paperwork to Client Relationships
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Insurance agents and brokers can manage important external client work and the associated heavy documentation to ensure that policy documentation is in good order. In order to streamline these time-consuming back-office tasks, insurance professionals can use easy in-call solutions to explain, process, complete and sign policy documents.
Automation is transforming business operations and helping companies operate better than ever before. Its impact on the insurance industry is already being seen, putting pressure on insurance companies to adopt this new technology before they get left in the dust.
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