4 Ways AI Can Benefit the Insurance Industry

4 Ways AI Can Benefit the Insurance Industry

This post is part of a series sponsored by AgentSync.

Advances in technology have breathed new life into the slow, inefficient processes common in the insurance industry. While the influx into AI-powered systems has some employees concerned about job security, there are many reasons human touch is still a crucial element of insurance.

Automation is on the rise across all industries

We’ve all heard that sooner or later robots will rule the world. Believe it or not, the facts seem to paint the same picture that no industry is safe from automation. It is estimated that AI will replace 85 million jobs worldwide by 2025. While this is great news for consumers, who will no doubt celebrate the increased efficiencies automation is bringing to their everyday lives, what does this mean for those whose jobs are at risk?

Well, what if the question on the minds of employees wasn’t, “How soon will robots take over our jobs?” but, “How can we collaborate with robots to better serve our customers?” That’s the way the conversation needs to be about AI does not end in us against them.

People should not be replaced by technology, but empowered by it; In consumer-centric industries like insurance, the human touch is still very important.

The growing use of AI in the insurance industry

You may be thinking AI in insurance…really? Sure, historically this industry hasn’t exactly been known for its technological innovation, but as Bob Dylan once sang, times are changing. Currently, 21 percent of insurance companies state that they are currently preparing their employees for the introduction of AI-based systems. AI has revolutionized the insurance industry, once known for its time-consuming tasks and manual inefficiencies.

The automation revolution has proven beneficial in helping insurance companies grow, save money, reduce fraud and increase efficiency. However, over-reliance on technology and removing human contact entirely from insurance processes can be detrimental.

The truth is, only a human can understand the true scope of a customer’s needs and the emotion behind each sale. There are several areas of the insurance industry that actually benefit from human-machine partnership.

4 areas of the insurance industry that benefit from AI but still need the human touch

1. Fraud

Technology is already helping us stop fraudulent activity in the insurance industry before it becomes a bigger problem. AI-powered fraud detection systems can remember patterns and alert users to suspicious activity. For insurers dealing with sensitive data, the added layer of security can help build trust with customers.

Although AI-powered systems can alert users to fraudulent activity, they don’t actually catch the scam. That role still rests with the people. However, once a system has signaled a suspicion of fraud, people must act on that knowledge to actually prevent the fraud and determine if the activity is genuinely fraudulent. Then the people running the system can feed that knowledge of the attempted scam back into the AI-powered system to improve its accuracy the next time something fishy happens.

2. Claims Processing

Claims processing is full of labour-intensive, low-value tasks that in many cases are still performed manually. This not only wastes employees’ time, but can also lead to human error and additional costs. For these reasons, insurers can and should increase their use of technology to settle claims faster, more accurately and at a lower cost to the business.

In the increasingly automated world, personal engagement when a customer needs it most can serve as a differentiator. A customer’s experience throughout the claims process is critical to the retention and growth of an insurer.

While AI-powered technology should be used to relieve insurers’ staff of time-consuming tasks, it should not completely replace the human aspect of claims processing. Instead, technology should empower professionals with the tools they need to speed claims resolutions and give them more time to build customer relationships.

3. Producer onboarding

The insurance industry is currently going through a talent crisis, making it difficult for companies to find and retain good producers. As hiring becomes more competitive, agencies with outdated producer onboarding processes risk losing talent to competitors who can offer a more efficient experience.

If your approach to vendor onboarding is riddled with siled data, disconnected processes, and compliance bugs, then it’s probably a good time for an update. AI can be a powerful tool in the onboarding process, especially when it comes to new hire paperwork, IT setup, and training.

Although technology can help attract new producers and sell them faster, it should never replace a real human welcome in the company. At the end of the day, HR is all about people. Removing the human element entirely from the onboarding process isn’t the best way to show new hires how excited you are to have them on your team.

4. Customer Communications

In the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic, mercy was bestowed on businesses across all industries as they learned to adapt to new touchless, all-digital ways of working. After almost three years, many customers expect companies to offer digital alternatives or supplements to their services.

Today, customers communicate through email, video calls, submission forms, and even text. AI-powered chat boxes are an easy way for customers to get answers quickly. Online communication makes it easy to send and receive information anytime, anywhere.

There’s no denying that AI has improved the customer experience, but there’s one big area where it falls short: human connection. Insurance customers still want and need expert advice from independent brokers. No two customers are exactly alike and it takes a real person to fully understand each policyholder’s unique needs.

Create space for the partnership between man and machine

The insurance industry is in a unique position. Insurance professionals have the opportunity to combine world-class technology with their best people to deliver faster, more accurate service to their clients.

Just as the refusal to embrace technology will limit agency growth, so too will people be taken out of the equation. Only companies that find ways for employees to use technology to their advantage will be able to provide the efficient and personalized services their customers crave.

If you’re ready to see how AgentSync can help your team with efficiency and accuracy, schedule a demo today and let us show you how it looks better.

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