Choosing the right insurance technology can be bewildering. There is an amazing array of different solutions to support every facet of the operation.
Increased demand for technology
COVID has seen an acceleration of demand for improved technology at every level across the industry. BAIS insurance technology has found the proven technology of efficient portals are becoming increasingly sought after.
Portals have been used for a long time by larger insurance companies and intermediaries.
Smaller underwriting agencies and brokers are now looking to catch up with the benefits they can bring. Regardless of the type of portal, the main function is to enable insurance administration to take place without any need for double entering data or speaking directly to the clients.
Back in 2015, PwC produced a report that still holds true, stating that 'some carriers treat portals simply as vehicles for branding rather than digital storefronts that provide a way for employees, agents, and policyholders to interact and transact with the company.'
Most common portals
The most common portals in the insurance sector are:
- Client portal — for end clients to access their insurance information, keep their details up to date and process simple transactions themselves
- Broker portal — enabling brokers to easily process information with underwriters
- Quote, bind and pay portals — online insurance purchase solutions, fully integrated from website to core insurance system
At BAIS, we have seen many brokers and underwriting agencies develop end to end solutions leading to 99 per cent of business coming direct through the portal with no need to touch the work coming through.
Built on strong personal relationships
A common argument against the use of fully automated portal technology is the loss of personal relationships with end clients, in addition to perceived cost.
There is some truth in this, as many insurance companies, in particular, have used portal technology to drastically reduce the number of people involved in servicing clients.
For an industry built on strong relationships, there are many examples of companies who have successfully implemented highly automated portals and used a proportion of the resource savings to increase their value add to clients.
Indeed, simply reducing the need for additional administration interventions often improves the integrity of the data, directly improving client satisfaction.
Costs have also reduced to levels where the business case for creating portals is easy to make.
Those who have progressed business digitalisation will have seen the opportunities. It is possible to use portals and more automated technology systems to reduce administration effort and errors while and improve client services and relationships not displacing them.
Time to invest
If you have not fully investigated the potential for portals to reduce your administration activities and improve client service, then now is the time to speak to your insurance system providers.
They should be able to provide you solutions that work for your business, are fully integrated and don’t rely on third party plugins or APIs to move data.
With the world starting to live with COVID and look positively towards the future, clients are now expecting better digital solutions and sticking to a traditional business model could be a significant disadvantage.