Technology Advancements in Claims Handling
At the 2017 America’s Claims Event, a session discussed how technology advancements are enhancing customer service and claims handling. The speaker was Jeff Saye, Global Practice Leader for P&C Insurance Claims with Genpact.
Claims organizations are challenged with balancing three competing priorities:
- Loss Accuracy
- Expense Control
- Customer Satisfaction
Emerging technologies and big data are enabling carriers to do a better job balancing these priorities and which can create competitive advantages.
A typical claims process involves multiple touch points and manual interventions between the claim handler and the person filing the claim. With technology you can reduce these touch points, which can reduce costs while adding efficiency.
Examples of technologies that are improving claims processes:
- Digitization – Enhance the customer experience using mobile phone apps and digital channels. Examples of this include the ability to file claims using a smartphone app and an integrated claims assignment using that same app. The potential business impact includes improved customer experience and ease and speed of the claims process. It is important to think through the full claims process to make sure you meet customer expectations. Making things easier on the front end when the back end cannot keep up will only create dissatisfaction.
- Drones – On the property insurance side drone use shows tremendous promise. They can assist adjusters in completing faster and more accurate property damage assessments. Adjuster safety is also improved as they do not have to get onto roof tops or other unreachable or dangerous places. There are some companies who have given all their field adjusters drones to assist in their damage assessments.
- Telematics – These provide real-time information on things like air bag deployments and also crash locations using GPS technology. These are being used to provide first notice of loss (air bag deployment) and to assist in claim adjudication. The expected business impact includes improved driving habits (that could reduce risk), real time reporting, and diminished fraud. There is much more widespread adoption of this technology in Europe than the United States.
- Augmented Reality – This creates a composite view by supplementing the real view world with text, audio and video. AR is being explored for damage assessment using digital photos to complete damage assessments in auto claims. The hope is this leads to more accurate inspections and loss estimates, improved turnaround time, and better customer experience.
- Analytics and Big Data – Analysis of data using techniques like business rules, predictive modeling, text mining, anomaly reporting can improve fraud detection, recovery, litigation, and also settlement optimization. The right models can reduce touch points on the claims improving efficiency.
- Cognitive Intelligence – Also known as machine learning. This is the science of getting computers to act without rules based programming. Cognitive intelligence will be able to both collect data and learn based on the data. This area shows tremendous promise in the claims process as it could reduce manual efforts, improve efficiency, and ultimately lead to a better customer experience. 98% of insurance executives expect this will play a disruptive role in the industry.
- Internet of Things – This is a network of physical objects that gathers and transmits information. This would include things like connected security system, smart refrigerators, etc. On the property side sensors built into appliances, in basements, etc could not only predict imminent losses but also provide an alarm to help mitigate any loss. It is hoped this could reduce claim frequency and severity.
- Intelligent Automation – This is taking artificial intelligence and machine learning to the next level as a machine could perform tasks based on information received and analyzed. This would include intake of first report of injury, verifying coverage, sending out letters, assigning field adjusters, etc. This essentially could eliminate the claims intake and triage process. The thought is this could lead to better claims handling accuracy, timeliness of payments, and also have a significant impact on carrier operating costs.
A case study presented showed the biggest impact these types of technology was a significant improvement in productivity which resulted in operational savings for the claims department. They also noted improvement in customer satisfaction and a slight improvement in loss estimate accuracy.