This past year was one like no other. With the entire world forced to move to digital work rapidly, many industries felt growing pains and suffered from the sudden shifts. One industry that didn’t was insurtech.
The term “insurtech” applies to a variety of digital tools used in the insurance industry. Everything from a client portal to an integrated rater are insurtech. Overall, insurtech removes barriers in insurance, speeding up enrollment and claims processing, among other procedures, making it easier for agencies to grow their business and serve their customers.
Since 2015, insurtech investment has steadily increased, hitting $2.5 billion in funding in 2020. This consistent growth speaks to insurtech’s value, and individual agency successes show that insurtech works.
Given its benefits, many of our independent agencies are asking if and how they should adopt insurtech. We offer advice with the following questions.
Where are you in your tech use?
There’s no doubt insurtech can advance agency operations. But, if your agency is still using decade-old computers or in the midst of upgrading to paperless workflows among other modern systems, you should take it similarly slow in adopting new insurtech. Know your own pace and make a plan as to what you’ll adopt and when, giving your team time to adjust so you can implement new tech with fidelity.
What are your goals for insurtech?
What exactly is your agency after in investing in new tech? Do you want to address operational issues? Grow your customer base? Add value to the customer experience? What your goals are will determine what types of insurtech to add to your operations first. You should only add new technology if you have a clear plan for its use.
What insurtech do we have now? Do we need to add to it?
There are a few key insurtech items every agency should work to adopt. Those include:
- Client portal
- Insurance CRM
- Marketing automation
- Integrated email and texting
If you already utilize this tech, you can consider adding other items, depending on your specific goals and needs. Other tech to consider include:
- VOIP phones
- Digital payments
- Commercial rating
- Digital forms and eSignature
It’s up to you and your agency how to want to grow. But, pay attention to how trends move and keep a pulse on whether or not these “nice to have” items move to the “need to have” column.
What are the potential risks we need to address?
Yes, insurtech improves operations, enhances customer service, and promotes growth, but it has drawbacks. The most prominent is the increased vulnerability to cyber threats. The more you leverage digital connections, the more you expose your agency to cyber-attacks. That doesn’t mean you should write off insurtech; you simply need to ensure you have robust security measures and employee training to keep your data safe.
The other significant risk is losing personalization and the human touch your customers value. Be intentional about how you use insurtech – it can increase personalization if used correctly. Pay attention to how you’re using new technology, including training your staff on how to leverage its benefits and avoid falling into a less human-centric approach.
Who should we partner with for insurtech?
This is one of the most important questions you can ask. While the tech may sound great, if the provider isn’t willing to work with and for you it’s not worth the investment.
We work side by side with our Partner Platform agencies to determine what tech they need. Our in-house team is well versed in integrating top-of-the-line insurtech resources into our system, and we’ve partnered with our elite Partner Allies to get experts on the case.
Along with providing an integrated, best-in-class experience, we work with our agencies to ensure they have the best training and always accessible resources to keep themselves equipped to serve their customers.