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Digital Transformation & the Customer Experience

Whether insurers like it or not, digital transformation is coming to the industry. It's all thanks to insurance consumers.

The insurance industry is traditional and highly-regulated. It's found the digital tools and processes that have worked for its workforce. Much of that technology is now antiquated. The employees who put those processes into place are on the verge of retiring, leading to a potential insurance industry talent crisis. 

Customer experiences (cx) in many other industries have quickly digitized. It's what is now expected in any customer-facing interactions with any business. If you don't provide customers with the experience they've come to expect, they'll turn to your competition.

 The push for digital transformation has now accelerated in the insurance industry. Processes are moving faster and customer interactions are more automated and personalized.  AgentSync says the industry has begun with digitizing existing processes. Now, the industry has started to find use cases for new innovative insurance products.

Insurance companies are still figuring out their digital transformation and CX strategy in this phase. But no matter what their business models are, there’s a connective tissue. Digitizing the industry is driven by how businesses can improve and streamline the insurance customer experience.

What is the Connection Between Digital Transformation and the Customer Experience?

If you want to know how insurtech is reshaping insurance, just look at the change in customer expectations. Digital technology has given customers control over their interactions with businesses. As Voxco writes, a good customer experience is what paves the path for the growth and success of a business. That's because people have come to expect the Amazon experience with every organization.

They want their product or service quickly and efficiently. In fact, Birlasoft reports that 88% of insurance consumers now want a personalized offering. If insurers don't rise to their level of expectation, they'll lose their customer base. 

It goes to show that a positive customer experience is what sets businesses apart from their competitors. With insurtech startups posing a rising threat to traditional insurance companies, those agencies need digital to keep up. It's likely why Birlasoft states that insurers' investment in technology is expected to grow at 16% CAGR by 2023. 

With legacy systems and highly-regulated processes, the industry is slower to adapt to new technology from insurtech companies. But the window to jump on the digital bandwagon is closing. If you miss out on the opportunity to embrace change, your customers will pay the price. But with the right mindset, you can leverage your digital transformation strategy to improve and accurately measure your customer experience strategies. 

How Digital Transformation is Driving the Customer Experience

digital transformation CX insurance

Source: Robosoft Technologies

Only 29% of insurance consumers are satisfied with their providers, due to poor customer service experiences. Needless to say, the industry's reputation is in need of a facelift. Digital transformation can help in the following ways. 

  • Personalized offerings Personalization is now a necessity for insurance companies. This can allow you to offer your customers targeted offers, messages, and prices to the right people at the right time. When you provide consumers with the experience they're looking for, they'll be more likely to stay in business with you. 
  • More business efficient operations — The right software will make your business run smoother. Take ProNavigator's insurance knowledge management tool. We allow you to manage all documents from underwriting manuals to policy wordings in one place. That way your team can search for whatever documents they need with ease. When your employees spend less time on tedious tasks, they'll be happier and more productive. In turn, they'll provide a better customer experience. 
  • Scalability and agility — Insurance companies need to be prepared to grow quickly and digital transformation can easily help with that. Insurance technology can now automate what were once manual processes for agents and underwriters alike. That means that as you grow your customer base, you won't need to purchase additional space or equipment. Your business can easily scale through the cloud. 

Not can technological initiatives improve your digital customer experience, but they can also improve your business revenue. Businesses can increase revenue by 20% - 50% just by undergoing digital transformation. 

How to Speed Up Your Digital Transformation 

Insurance’s slower-moving digital transformation isn't because the industry doesn't want to embrace digital. As Insurtech Insights writes, it's because the insurance workforce simply has more hoops to jump through in the digital transformation journey. 

For one, larger insurers may be left with a layered infrastructure of software that is difficult to integrate with newer insurtech solutions. On top of that, insurance companies have to prioritize staying up to date with regulatory requirements. Finally, many members of the insurance workforce don't have the digital skills to help propel digital transformation within their organization. 

But there are ways to move forward at a steady pace.

  • Pivot to become virtual-first — Insurance may be a people-first industry, but it doesn’t have to be in-person. The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the way we work, as plenty of business is now done through emails and video calls. Keep the choice for in-person customer and employee meetings open, but remain open to virtual options. This will get your organization in the right mindset to take your whole organization on the digital transformation journey. 
  • Define your digital transformation strategy — Start slow and simple. Nail down a vision for your company and plan out a roadmap to get your team there. Include your ideal customer journey and employee journey.
  • Re-invest in your employees — Set your employees up to provide a great experience for customers. Whenever you implement software, make sure that training opportunities are available so employees feel comfortable with new technology. Reskilling and upskilling your workforce means that they will be able to operate in the most efficient ways possible. That means they'll be prepared to pivot and adapt to whatever tools hit the market next.
  • Utilize change management resources — Digital transformation needs to be measured and analyzed at every step in the process. Change management can help you do that. Leveraging the right tools and resources will show you what’s working. On the flip side, those solutions can also reveal what can be improved within your digital business model. 

No one’s expecting the industry to change overnight — it's going to take time. But starting to incorporate small and meaningful changes will show your customers that you’re willing to meet their digital expectations.

This will prove to your customer base that you’re more in tune with their needs than your competitors. You’ll see the benefits of digital transformation in no time. 

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