Digital Disruption Is Reshaping The Insurance Sector

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Digital Disruption Is Reshaping The Insurance Sector
Himali Patel - 19 August 2019

Technology is reshaping industries drastically and the insurance sector is no exception. Artificial Intelligence (AI) will play a major role in providing business insights said Goutam Datta, Chief Information and Digital Officer, Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance in a conversation with Himali Patel

1. How technology has had a profound impact on the insurance industry?

Digital transformation is now a mantra for each organisation, irrespective of the industry it operates in. Within insurance and more specifically within life insurance, the story is no different. With insurance transitioning from a push product to a pull product, technology innovations in business and claims processing, sales and customer service are the need of the hour. The use of Artificial Intelligence (AI), cognitive and experiential technologies have not only changed the way customers purchase insurance, but has also transformed the way insurers assess risk, manage the purchase process, provide policy services and settle claims.

2. What opportunities do you think the new-age technologies will bring to the insurance industry?

The increasing use of new-age digital technologies like Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Analytics is leaving insurers with a huge amount of data about customers and their behaviour. Behavioural analytics can help insurers understand the lifestyle habits, preferences and behavioural trends of individuals. This can help insurers create need-based insurance products and services that make customers’ life easy.

Furthermore, with the help of data and analytics, insurers can underwrite and price policies better as well as detect fraud cases, if any. As the industry is becoming more and more data-driven, I believe the adaption of new-age technologies will become imperative in adding value for businesses and all its stakeholders

3. How AI will shape the future of insurance industry over the next 10 years?

Artificial intelligence (AI) has become more about today and now, and less about someday in future. Today, insurers are using AI-powered chatbots to help customers and other stakeholders solve their queries instantly, without losing the customisation provided by a human intervention. Chatbots are also being used to detect fraudulent claims and automate business processing tasks. All this at a lesser cost and improved operational efficiencies.

In the coming years, I believe AI will play a major role in providing business insights with the use of advanced algorithms. By leveraging AI, companies can identify the needs and behaviour patterns of consumers, and accordingly deliver customised products and services that will meet the customers’ needs and enable more efficient and personalised experience for the customer.

4. Buying insurance policies online is steadily growing. Do you think customers prefer buying insurance policies online, rather than offline?

Life insurance products have been primarily bought from intermediaries such as individual agents, bank partners or insurance brokers, and this trend will continue for a while. However, with technological transformations, and the proliferation of the digital space, we have seen online channels pick up pace as well.

The online channels enable customers to directly connect with an insurance company, make comparisons between similar products and then choose the product that is best suited for their goals, all on their fingertips. Further, the digitisation of documentation and verification processes are also enabling customers purchase insurance policies quickly and at ease, which is giving impetus to the online purchase of life insurance policies. Insurers are also using chatbots to handhold the customer in their online journey and provide them a seamless service experience at all stages.

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