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2018 was a transitional year for the insurance industry. The typical “wait and see” approach to making technology investments, expanding into adjacent markets, and launching new products has largely been replaced with an “act now” sense of urgency. And while the industry is always evolving, what is undeniably clear is that the pace of change is faster than we’ve ever seen, and predicted to accelerate in the year ahead.
What is at the root of all this change? Insurers are recognizing the growing importance of delivering differentiated experiences, and are showing a willingness to adapt to the growing needs of their employees, customers, and partners.
Here are our 5 predictions for Insurance companies looking to differentiate on experience in 2019:
- Customer support representatives will make a comeback: Consumers are expressing increased frustration with the lack of access to a human-to-human interaction when it comes to customer support. There will be a ‘hollowing out of the middle’ – straightforward support tasks will continue to get easier to self-service or address with the help of a bot, while complex issues will go directly to a representative who can assist. The biggest gains will come from using data to better inform how or to whom an issue should be routed.
- Customer loyalty will be a bigger focus than ever before: A customer has a 99 percent chance of being satisfied with their insurer if they strongly trust the company, but only 1 percent chance if they strongly distrust it. Further, a person who strongly distrusts their insurer is nearly 18 times as likely to anticipate changing carriers in the next three years as one who strongly trusts their provider. Insurers will continue to become increasingly focused on this reality and will renew their emphasis on delivering experiences that build trust and loyalty to improve customer retention.
- The prioritization of a seamless omnichannel experience: Connected consumers expect flawless experiences regardless of channel and, today, most insurers are falling short. As insurance companies continue to invest heavily in their own digital transformations, they will realize that they also have to start perfecting the art of the omnichannel experience.
- Finding experience symbiosis (CX = EX): This year, companies will start to understand that they are unable to provide customers with an exceptional experience without first ensuring their employees are content in their roles. Companies will recognize the importance of empowering their employees, both with feedback from customers and the autonomy to do the right thing. This shift will have a lasting impact on their overall brand perception from both employees and customers.
- Disruptors begin to disrupt: Startups trying to rebuild the insurance experience from the ground up will go from earning press coverage in 2018 to earning meaningful share of a customer’s wallet in 2019. While no one insurtech is likely to inflict significant pain on the behemoths, collectively their impact will be hard for the incumbents to ignore.
Want to know where 2019 will take the entire experience management space? Watch the 5 CX Predictions for 2019 webinar on demand to dig into our predictions for how companies can best innovate on experience and stay ahead of the curve this year.