8 Insights from the 2019 ILC ClaimsTech Conference

We work hard to help our customers overcome challenges and often attend conferences to gain a better understanding of the real issues they face

Last week our Chief Commercial Officer, Ken Clanton, attended the ClaimsTech conference hosted by I Love Claims to hear leading UK insurance companies and InsureTechs discuss the future of claims. The conference focused on how technology can be utilised to improve the claims process and below are 8 insights we gained from the sessions:

  1. Claims is an inherently complex process

Claims involve multiple interactions between the customer, insurer and suppliers.  They begin with a stressful call from a customer who needs help. The process steps and duration vary by claim type and the customer experience is highly dependent on a supplier network which is often not digitally enabled. 

2. Get clear about the problem before deciding how to fix it

It is easy to get caught up in an innovation arms race where new tech is the answer to every problem.  Successful organisations begin with clear problem definition and then examine a range of tech and non-tech options to solve it.

We’ve found that asking customers three questions provides a framework to understand the problem and evaluate potential fixes: 

  • What do you believe to be the root cause of the problem?

  • What will you measure to confirm the problem has been solved?

  • What does solving this problem enable the business to do?

Clear answers to these questions provide a framework to test drive concepts before making massive tech investment.

3. There is no technology silver bullet to improve Claims

Despite the massive productivity promises made by some InsureTechs, there is no single system that will instantly improve claims. Instead, it was recommended that claims directors take a more holistic, service design approach to deconstruct and examine key processes. Then focus on a series of focused tech and process improvements which collectively deliver a better customer end to end experience.

4. Companies can win by cultivating a culture of innovation from within

Employees are your ears on the ground and best understand the real problems they and your customers face on a daily basis.  Liam Gray suggested that often the best ideas to improve businesses come from within - “Innovation is your insurance against irrelevance.”  Creating a culture of innovation which engages front line staff is key to unlocking and making the most of these ideas. 

5. Complex operating models make it hard to scale many piecemeal solutions

Insurance operating models are complex with large investments in core systems, processes and people.  Many firms have begun digital transformation programmes to create more data centric operating models. However, many still have fragmented internal and external processes requiring careful redesign.

Martin Milliner from LV= highlighted a common challenge is deploying new InsureTech solutions at scale.  “Often these point solutions show promise in a controlled proof of concept but are unable to handle the operational complexity when we try to put them into production.”

6. Deliver what your customers really want: convenience

Nicola Millard from BT suggested every organisation begin by asking, “What does the customer really want?”   She introduced the idea of a Net Easy Score as a measure of how easy an organisation is to work with and believes that convenience innovations can create real brand value. To test if something is truly valued by customers, she suggested asking three questions:

  • Is it useful?

  • Is it usable?

  • Is it used? 

If the answer to one of these is “no,” then it’s worth a closer look to determine what is being done, why and if you can make it easier for the customer.

7. Incorporating external data can deliver new innovations

Both new and existing technology can be used to improve claims processes. Damion Thompson from Google gave examples of how free services from Google (Maps, Waymo, Nest) can be used to provide information which enable claims to be processed more efficiently.  He highlighted several startups who have begun to use these tools to create new services to improve FNOL, data collection and fraud detection.   

Voice analysis was called the “killer app” in one session because it is a rich source of untapped data.  We agree and were a finalist for “Best AI Product In Insurance” at CogX 2019 for our pioneering work in FNOL voice analytics. 

8. Employees are at the centre of our business model and AI can help them shine

As Sam White from Pukka Insurance put it, “I’m excited about how AI can do some of the mundane work we ask our people to do. Let’s use it to free up their time to listen to and assist our customers.”

We agree! Intelligent Automation creates more time for claims teams to help customers get their lives back to normal.  Improving the care of your customer ultimately improves your loss ratio. Forward thinking insurers will publish customer claims ratings and use them to drive sales.

Overall, the conference highlighted a keen interest and focus to improve claims processing and ultimately deliver customer delight.  If you would like to discuss a claims improvement initiative, please get in touch.