You must check a host of new parameters before buying the right policy in this age of new normal
One Virus Has Changed Our Lives. And Our Perspectives
It took just one microorganism to teach us two important things: Life is extremely unpredictable, and humans are surprisingly adaptable. Truly, the pandemic has changed the way every individual lives. From travel, work, shopping and even the way we breathe – everything has changed. COVID-19 has brought about visible shifts in consumer behaviour and thinking. Perspectives and priorities have changed. Awareness levels around health and morbidity of family members are at an all-time high. The way certainties of life are looked at has changed, including the risk-taking appetite. In this scenario, it is no surprise then that the consciousness level of insurance as a risk protection tool is elevated. Furthermore, the world around us is undergoing continual change. When planning for insurance today, one should not only factor in the environment changes triggered by COVID-19 but also the existing and evolving macroeconomic and demographic factors.
There Is No Time Like NOW
Life is full of certainties and has many milestones – school, graduation, first job, love, marriage, children and beyond. You can dream on. However, there are various realities of life that one must not ignore. When we look at life from the lens of life insurance – the key focus would be on responsibilities, ageing and inflation.
Responsibility of providing for your family is a big one. Securing your child’s future, be it higher education or marriage, is important and needs astute planning. So does your own retirement. Like it or not, there will come a day when you will stop earning. Ageing is a reality. By 2030, the global population of older people aged 60 and more will see a growth of 50 per cent. From the current 900 million plus to 1.4 billion. Advanced medical facilities have led to longevity going up. Having said that, ageing also brings with it a complete package of needs and wants. Living costs will only go up, which will make it difficult to continue with the standard that we are used to. Expenses towards health are a big one here. All this mandates that we give insurance and planning for life high priority.
The cost of postponing planning for these certainties will be crippling in the long-term. Moreover, this is the youngest you will ever be. Therefore, the best time to buy suitable insurance product(s) for life’s certainties is NOW.
Multiple Propositions, One Click And Advantage Customer
So, now that you have decided to buy that insurance policy, we have more good news! What if we told you that you can get a genuine, bespoke, hyper-personalised product made just for you? You are unique. Why should your insurance be any different? Allow me to simplify.
Imagine you are in a restaurant that offers you a-la-carte dishes of your choice vis-à-vis one where you must eat the set menu that’s offered with no choice or flexibility. Having an option to make a choice is nice, right? What if we told you that you can do this even while buying an insurance policy? All thanks to digital enhancements and the easily accessible advanced digital technologies, you can easily find the product that’s right for you. A great example of this is insurance products that vary with varying risk appetites. A traditional endowment policy for lower risk appetite and a ULIP for the opposite. The former may provide a minimum guarantee plus bonus or a fully guaranteed amount, while the latter provides for a range of market-linked investment options.
Insurance Purchase And Servicing – As Simple as It Gets!
India’s internet users are projected to increase from the 670 million to 914 million by 2027. As digital adoption continues to rise, organisations will use it to the customer’s advantage. Insurance companies today are going all out to better customer experience at every touch point. Whether it concerns information, access to distribution, service, or customisation, it only makes sense for you to leverage this opportunity. Look at the benefits available at your fingertips – contactless connect, transparency, immediate support via chat bots, self-service portals, the choices are endless!
Additionally, there are various customer-first benefits ranging from paying premiums from any part of the world, to One-Day Claims settlement on a medium as easy as WhatsApp.
When you thought this couldn’t get any better, it just did! AI augments your digital footprint to give you more customised and targeted options. This is in the form of hyper-personalised products that are easy to understand and simple to buy. For example, like your credit score impacts your loan application, going forward your health score may impact your policy premium. So how will your health score be calculated? Through data transmitted by your wearables, your shopping history (you may want to revisit the proportion of healthy wholesome food v/s unhealthy junk food in your buy basket).
Who Makes the First Move?
Jack Welch rightly says, “Change before you have to”. It is essential that we take the initiative to change rather than wait for circumstances to force us into it. You have a commitment towards protecting certainties of life for your family and yourself. If you still haven’t bought that insurance policy, I would seriously urge that you do it as soon as you finish reading this piece. That is the level of urgency and agility I would recommend customers to adopt. There is a whole new world waiting to be discovered. Go ahead and make the best of it by taking the first step towards protecting all your future certainties.
The author is Deputy CEO of IndiaFirst Life Insurance Company
DISCLAIMER: Views expressed are the author's own. Outlook Money does not necessarily subscribe to them. Outlook Money shall not be responsible for any damage caused to any person/organisation directly or indirectly.