Insurers Must Not Fear E-Commerce Thinking
The march of technology and digital change has not spared any industry, and adapting to the new pace of change is a defining strategic pressure of the last quarter century. The innovation cycle that has disrupted so many industries follows a now familiar path—innovation, disruption, adaptation, and new growth.
For insurance, there is now an opportunity to leap past the expensive early steps of “creative destruction.” Best practices and mature enterprise-level tools that answer the digital question are emerging at the same time.
An exceptional example is aYo in South Africa—a company whose success showcases the value of thinking outside the box and using technology as a basis for business. aYo’s origins from within a telecommunications company (MTN) might lead some insurers to dismiss its applicability to existing insurance companies, but their success is less about “coming from telecom and tech,” and more about recognizing that they could leverage available tech tools – in this case solid e-commerce frameworks – to sell a new service to customers. aYo offers users and subscribers of MTN Mobile Money, a mobile banking solution, hospital cover and life insurance products. Users dial a USSD code to begin the registration process, and premiums are deducted through airtime or mobile money. The service is available in more than 6 African countries and continues to grow. Roughly three years after the launch, almost 10 million policy holders have been registered, with minimal transaction costs. Mobile insurance is now considered the most efficient way to reach the African market.
Underneath it all, is a technology and sales platform that is scalable in practically no time and works like a modern e-commerce suite rather than a traditional insurance core system.
The tech tools that power businesses like aYo all share a few key features that set them apart from traditional core systems. They all can quickly and directly exchange data with customers and distribution channels in real time and are available 24/7. Meeting these norms by upgrading legacy core systems will not be enough. Only companies which make profound use of new available technologies will have a chance to win the race for keeping and winning end-customers. Today’s consumers value fast, accessible and direct servicing more than a brand promise, which cannot be experienced online.
E-commerce requires excellent processes in the frontend and backend, offering broad ranges and configuration options for products and processes as well as a lean and scalable platform for purely digital end-to-end sales and service processes. This assertion still seems forward-thinking for insurance, but other industries have long been using powerful online-shop-systems that offer exactly the right features required to satisfy customers. Quality and speed of customer service are the focus of all activities – and the leaders of this change for insurance are already leveraging the type of tools that power the sales channels for the world’s biggest businesses.
At sum.cumo, a Sapiens company, we build on the e-commerce DNA of our founders. We understand how great digital customer experiences are built – and we’ve tailored them specifically for the insurance industry. Today, our tools and solutions power different types of organisational models (e. g. insurtechs, corporate startups, transforming traditional insurers). Though, we help partners create tailored solutions that meet their specific internal realities but result in the same key goal:
Enabling customer-centricity through transparent and fast end-to-end processes in all sales and service offerings.
Insurance companies can leverage pre-configured modules while still having all options for individual frontends and processes that can give them a competitive edge over other players – effectively leveraging best-practices out-of-the-box, and leaving lots of room for their own DNA over time.
A unique opportunity to focus on developing smart ideas rather than worrying about whether the IT platform can support the business model in the future.
Companies with the ambition to successfully perform in the digital world can learn more about our SCIP platform as an enabler for their business model.
*Read the full article here.
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