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Do More with Less: Automating Life Insurance Operations Helps Solve Labor Market Woes

Equisoft has seen recent changes in insurance operations in response to the evolving financial and labor markets. Insurers are finding it increasingly hard to find talent, making it difficult to maintain productivity levels, let alone grow. At the same time, rising interest rates and a slowing economy have triggered the first rounds of belt-tightening in large enterprises.

Reduced staff levels put an absolute premium on the need for insurers to find ways to do more with less. Companies are taking every possible opportunity to reduce the number of resources they need to run day-to-day operations and double down on automation in order to continue to grow.

On a recent Life Accelerated podcast, Celent’s Principal Analyst of Life, Annuities, and Health in the Americas, Keith Raymond spoke with IIR’s Anthony O’Donnell about how, as part of their digital transformation strategy, life insurers are leveraging automation to improve processes, enhance decision-making, and free employees to work on higher-value, more strategic activities.

1. Life insurers leverage automation to cut costs & free workers to be more strategic

The clearest benefit of automation is the ability to save your organization time and money by outsourcing repetitive and simple tasks to technology.

Automation allows your team to take on more proactive and analytical work, and focus on solving higher-value problems– tasks that require emotional intelligence and analytical intelligence - that need a human perspective and keen eye.

“[Automation] will come with efficiencies from the standpoint of employee satisfaction. Hey, I don't have to work on these mundane things anymore. I could work on something of higher value.”

Keith Raymond, Principal Analyst, Life, Annuities & Health, The Americas, Celent

Automation isn’t just beneficial to your bottom line. Providing employees with the time and space to focus on higher-value tasks creates more growth opportunities – for both the organization and the individuals. It allows your people to think more strategically and humanely about your organization’s customer experience

2. Automation allows companies to create faster, more manageable experiences that increase customer satisfaction

The second advantage life insurance companies experience in leveraging data is the overall improvement in their customer experience. With automation and other data science tactics, companies are able to streamline customer experiences throughout the buying processes, renewal processes, and day-to-day functions. And with more data to manage, artificial intelligence can make smart recommendations and solve simple problems without human intervention. Thus, speeding up the process on the customer’s end of things, saving employee time, and drastically improving the overall customer experience. Who wants to wait days and hours for a response to a simple question, when they can get it in minutes?

“They migrated from [doing most of the activity on the front end] into improving things like their policy administration systems and so forth and – from a standpoint of customer experience – focusing on long pole and the tent and the process of general underwriting.
They've done a lot with that as well from the standpoint of automation. The industry definitely did a pretty dramatic shift.”
 Keith Raymond, Principal Analyst, Life, Annuities & Health, The Americas, Celent

In today’s world where immediate gratification reigns king, a faster and easier customer experience makes for a more satisfied customer.

As financial and labor markets continue to evolve and impact life insurer strategies and bottom lines we expect to see further increases in machine learning applications, robotic process automation, AI, Natural Language Applications, and a whole host of other automation that will speed up and streamline processes across organizations.

Those companies that adapt their digital strategies to build strong end-to-end platform capability that is enhanced by data and automation will build the greatest engagement with consumers and employees, resulting in a significant competitive advantage.

To find out more about automation, cloud technology developments, and platform development, listen to the full episode with Keith here.

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