Digital tools have revolutionised the way we work and impacted every aspect of business. Consumers now expect the businesses they interact with to be digitally focused; yet, in light of new research, it seems that insurance companies aren’t keeping pace with the transformation.
A report from Willis Towers Watson and Mergermarket polled 200 senior-level executives from the insurance industry. It uncovered that more than half (58%) believe that insurance has lagged behind other financial services organisations when it comes to implementing digital technologies.
In its blog, Willis Towers Watson explains how insurers admit to being ‘reticent’ about being the guinea pigs for using new tools; and it is this attitude that has hindered the industry from moving forward.
Another survey, conducted by DocuSign and cited by smallbusiness.co.uk, highlights just how vital it is for businesses to harness digital technologies. Nearly six in 10 consumers (57%) said that they would choose to interact with a business that offered digital transactions over one that relied on ‘outdated,’ paper-based methods.
“If companies aren’t going online to accelerate the process of doing business internally, they need to do so for their customers,” commented Scott Olrich, DocuSign’s Chief Strategy and Marketing Officer.
“Today’s consumers demand the ease, speed and convenience of doing business digitally, and if your organisation doesn’t, they will find a modern business that does,” he added.
While companies are slow on the uptake of digital tools, that doesn’t mean they are ignorant of their benefits. C-suite executives are beginning to recognise how digital transformation is vital for their customers and for the future success of their organisation, with 85% citing it as a top business priority.
A digital-first approach
Digital transformation presents unparalleled opportunities for growth, with digital tools helping smaller organisations gain a foothold in an industry long dominated by larger businesses.
Insurance organisations need to speed up in-house processes and cut down time spent on operational and admin tasks – not just for the benefit of customers, but also for themselves. They need to devise a future-proof way of working for the years to come.
Digital tools now make up over 40% of research and development spending at the majority of insurers, explains Willis Towers Watson, indicating that the industry’s shift to digital is finally picking up pace.
The brokerage and advisory firm goes on to detail eight steps all insurers need to take while the window of opportunity for digitisation is still ‘wide open’ – which won’t last forever. These include:
- Creating a clear digital strategy
- Picturing the future of the company
- Harnessing internal innovation, but expecting setbacks
- Looking at the bigger picture
- Considering opportunities from outside of the business (partnerships or M&A options for example)
- Utilising current data sets
- Creating a culture that expects – and accepts – experimentation and failure
- Safeguarding margins to prevent disruptions to revenue and profits
Neil Thomson, ICE InsureTech’s Strategic Sales Director, commented: “It’s great to see that insurers understand how pivotal it is to adopt a digital-first approach when carrying out business.
“Going forward, those who haven’t done so already need to create clearly-defined digital strategies to guide and support their transformation, ensuring they are meeting, and possibly exceeding, the expectations of their digital-first customers.”
How ICE can help
If you’re looking for a technologically-advanced digital solution that’s quick and easy to implement, talk to the team at ICE today – contact ICE InsureTech