Forrester round table recap: The state of digital adoption in insurance.
On October 26th, Ellen Carney, Principal Analyst at Forrester, caught up with Quantum Metric’s product marketing team to chat about how Continuous Product Design can help insurance companies build better digital products, as well as the state of digital adoption in the insurance.
Kristina Leach, Director of Industry Marketing (FSI) at Quantum Metric, spoke with Carney about the challenges of digital transformation in the insurance industry.
Here’s a look at their conversation, which focused on how organizations can reach full digital adoption by becoming customer centric and ultimately customer obsessed.
How insurers can reach digital adoption.
For insurance companies, digital adoption is the ultimate goal. But the question is, “How do we get there?”
To reach true digital adoption, insurers need to become customer centric, and ultimately, customer obsessed. So how can insurers create a truly customer-obsessed culture?
Through digital transformation, of course.
“Digital transformation is a philosophy, it’s a state of mind.”
The way that insurance companies achieve a truly customer-obsessed culture is through digital transformation.
Early on in the roundtable, Carney said, “Digital transformation is a philosophy, it’s a state of mind.” Digital transformation’s perpetual business orientation, then, is obsessing around the customer.
Contrary to what some may think, digital transformation is not only about investing in the latest technology platforms. It’s a customer-led, insight-driven approach to building digital products. The latest technology should simply enable insurers and policyholders to accomplish important tasks such as signing up for policies, receiving a quote, and submitting a claim from any device, and without added friction.
Unfortunately, many insurance companies continue to lag behind. They are stuck in the “customer engaged model,” which can slow down the process of improving online customer experiences and producing faster launches. Instead, Leach and Carney explained insurers need to step back and understand how customers are interacting with their products.
Being customer obsessed, on the other hand, is being able to predict what customers want and need, even before they themselves know. This approach requires advanced technology, like AI and machine learning.
But, as Leach and Carney pointed out, digital transformation is actually about being more human centric. On the surface, reducing the number of clicks in a workflow might seem like a small thing. When you think about these small changes in the frame of a customer experience, it’s clear they help customers achieve their goals faster, especially when they are stuck in stressful situations, like a car accident.
In today’s world, policyholders should be able to file a claim right from their mobile app–all in just a few effortless taps and swipes.
How Continuous Product Design helps insurers obsess around the customer
Few organizations fit this customer-obsessed model, according to Carney and Leach. They are stuck using clunky legacy technology and adhering to outdated processes that are no longer effective.
Product, development, operations, CX/support, IT and other teams across the enterprise operate in their own silos. They rely on different platforms and tools for assessing different aspects of the customer experience. What is a priority for one team is often not even a point of conversation for another.
Continuous Product Design (CPD) aims to fix this problem by bringing all of the teams together, centered around one version of the truth. But what is that truth?
As Leach explained, the three habits of Continuous Product Design are:
- Proactive discovery, which is the automatic detection of customer behavior struggles.
- Quantified empathy, or the ability to visualize the customer experience with tools like session replay and quantify it at scale.
- Customer-centric prioritization, which is all about aligning teams faster with a customer-centric version of the truth.
In layman’s terms, insurance companies need to identify what products and features have the most revenue and drive the most conversions. Added to that, they need an understanding of the technical errors and design flaws that cause policyholders to reach out to the call center. Continuous Product Design helps companies make the digital experience more inclusive and more accessible, which means focusing on functionality.
Continuous Product Design is also about improving the employee experience, as Carney pointed out. It’s just as important to take “the friction out of the daily journeys that employees are on. For employees to be effective they need to know where customers have gone.”
Don’t just go building the shiniest new product without understanding how it will impact your users. As Carney put it, “Just because you digitize it, doesn’t mean it will resonate with them.”
What Carney means here is that digital teams should focus on building features that drive value for customers, and in turn, the business. Take for example chat boxes, which are driving engagement for both policyholders and employees. Customers not only get their questions answered faster. They also can rest assured that an actual human is on the other side of the screen.
Making insurance personal with first-party data.
Insurers must take a data-first, cloud first-approach to understanding the customer, listening to customer signals, and observing their behaviors.
According to Carney, policyholders are more open minded to people collecting first-party data if they “make sure what you offer is valid for [the customer’s needs].” Tons of traditional and incumbent insurers are taking a page out of the insurtech playbook and using a data-driven product design when building new features.
It turns out that customers respond better to companies collecting their data, if the company in question is offering a product that validates their needs.
If you’re interested in learning how Quantum Metric can help insurers increase customer acquisition, increase digital adoption, reduce call time, and more, read our insurance eBook or request a demo today.