Duck Creek Technologies Managing Director for EMEA, Shreyas Vasanthkumar, participated in a panel discussion at Intelligent Insurer’s Commercial Lines Innovation Europe conference looking at ways in which embedded insurance can improve customer experience and outcomes.
At the conference – which took place in London and focused on innovations in insurance – Shreyas joined industry peers Christophe Leur, Former CUO Zurich Germany; Andrew Holdway, co-Head of Strategic Partnerships, Swiss Re; Falk Albers, Partner, Practice Lead Commercial Motor & Mobility Consulting, Munich Re; and Beat Stalder, Group Chief Underwriting Officer Non Life, Helvetia Insurance Group.
The panel – which was moderated by Yuri Poletto, Founder, Open and Embedded Insurance Observatory – took a deep dive into embedded insurance and discussed ways in which insurers can expand their ecosystem partnerships to increase penetration and win new customers.
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Staying differentiated and relevant
It is clear that embedded insurance has the potential to deliver relevant coverage exactly when customers are most likely to recognise its value and the real-time experience it offers – the key being to connect innovative and relevant products with customers at exactly the right time in their buying journey. It is a hot topic in the industry and this panel discussion was, therefore, very timely.
To help frame the discussion, Yuri offered the opinion that while technically there is no universal definition of embedded insurance as it is still evolving at a rapid pace, it can be described as “,,,,,,offering protection that people and businesses need, when they need it most and through channels that they know well, that they use every day and that they trust. To put some numbers behind this, it is estimated that the embedded insurance market today makes up around US$1.5 trillion of the total global insurance market of US$5.5 trillion.”
Shreyas emphasised the crucial role of data in improving the customer journey, “If the goal is to offer the best customer outcomes, we must use data more effectively to help improve the entire end-to-end customer experience. We owe it to ourselves as an industry to make far better use of the data we have available to us.”
Christophe Leur commented, “More data doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re advancing. As an underwriter, we have a tendency to look at data from our side – the piece that we need to look at more closely, and where there are big opportunities in embedded insurance, is what the value is for customers; how does the customer value different coverages and what’s their preparedness to pay.”
Andrew Holdway added, “My view is that embedded insurance doesn’t necessarily give you access to more data so much as quicker access to better quality data – which leads to simplification and efficiency across the value chain. Simplified products and customer journey leads to greater understanding from customers about what they are buying and better customer satisfaction. Having a timely and relevant offering to the customer ultimately leads to a better buying process rather than traditionally a selling process.”
Automation and Collaboration
The panel also discussed areas they thought could be improved through automation. While some said that it was essential to focus investment on automation early on in the customer journey, others pointed out that customer service at point of sale was normally handled by a team who have already put a lot of effort into that area.
Shreyas commented that if we really want the best experience for customers ”we have to focus on innovating platforms and releasing products that are fit for purpose, timely and relevant.” He ended the discussion by pointing out that collaboration that comes through sharing data within new channels created through embedded insurance would only bring us closer to reaching our goal of the best possible experience for customers. “If done right, embedded insurance is going to enable a whole section of people who are uninsured or underinsured to get protection…but to get it right, it will need perfect harmony between partner, product and platform”, he said.
A full recording of this excellent panel discussion can be found here.