The pandemic has been a huge disruption in everyone’s life, so it should come as no surprise that the pandemic was a massive disruptor in the insurance industry. Agents could not hold face-to-face meetings with prospective policyholders, and the days of paper trails to collect information were over.
A shift to digital was inevitable, given what we’ve seen happening in the market over the last few years. Amazon has trained consumers that we can buy something in the morning and have it delivered by that afternoon. This instant gratification from direct interaction with no intermediary for getting what you need carries over to every aspect of our lives, including insurance.
Studies indicate that 81% of people will choose the self-service route in any stage of the customer lifecycle over a traditional support method. Insurance customers have come to expect digital solutions like self-service portals where they can obtain quotes, maintain policies, make payments, and report claims. The bottom line is insurance carriers have to do something to change the way they interact with their policyholders and agents. Demands for self-service are upon us!
The dangers of an outdated PAS
By moving to digital, the insurance process became significantly easier for consumers and met their expectations of the “Amazon effect.” But there’s a big difference between knowing the digital direction you want your insurance organization to be heading and actually steering the compass to get there. It’s not as simple as instant Amazon, where you can just order up a digital process.
Policy administration systems (PAS) are the backbone of insurance organizations. Not only do they execute critical functions such as rating, quote-to-bind flows, endorsements and renewals, they also include regulatory support, correspondence, billing and collections, commission accounting and payment, and financial reporting.
Silverline has worked with many insurance clients developing strategies on how to best address digital transformation. Most of the time, a company’s current PAS system(s) has been around for a long time and the organization has invested heavily to customize the system to its needs and continuing to maintain it. But as time goes on, the system becomes harder and harder to maintain, often in old technology, relying too much on paper and manual procedures, and lacking the flexibility needed to grow and scale with the business.
As policyholders and agents seek easier ways to do business supported by digital processes, their satisfaction goes down and it becomes increasingly clear that the current PAS systems cannot meet those expectations. The resulting frustration will likely lead to agents not willingly selling your policies and policyholders choosing a different carrier that is easier to work with.
Finding the middle path to digital transformation
With the ongoing shift towards digital transformation, many insurance companies are questioning how their business would be impacted if they let go of legacy systems. And if they do move to a new system, does that system have to do everything at once? Is it an all-or-nothing move or can it be transitioned over time?
The good news? It is not an all-or-nothing situation when it comes to upgrading PAS and all the functionality that circles around it – there is a middle path. And it’s a path that will lead them toward a digital future without sacrificing the advantages of their PAS systems.
By migrating certain business processes or systems to new digital technologies, companies can see how simple it is to implement “bite-sized” projects that have huge impacts on the bottom line. An example of this could be self-service policy quoting for consumers and exposing that information to an agent and underwriting teams. Tools can help to easily map data in multiple systems, allowing for a seamless integration to flag items Not in Good Order (NIGO), alert agents or policyholders to quickly fix issues, and route applications within the underwriting system with rule engines and approval processes – all leading to getting quotes on consumers’ screens faster.
It all sounds fantastic, doesn’t it?
That’s why we suggest taking a middle path. It lets you get your feet wet without taking the big plunge into the digital pool. Begin with integrating Salesforce digital processes into your existing PAS systems for certain lines of business at your organization. But how to get started? Silverline can help companies by reviewing your business to determine the best place to start, whether based on complexity, volume, quick wins, or another factor.
Integrating Salesforce with PAS systems
The benefit of integrating your existing PAS solutions with Salesforce insurance policy administration technology is that it allows insurance organizations to take information from their existing PAS and migrate it into Salesforce with tools like Salesforce Industries. With Salesforce Flow for Industries, companies can take the information that remains sitting outside of Salesforce in a PAS and use integration procedures to pull that information in as part of the final end product.
Silverline is experienced at guiding clients on the middle path. Here are two examples of Silverline clients that have made the digital transformation with Salesforce by taking a middle path approach:
- Warranty provider: A European warranty provider was looking to expand their business into the United States. They partnered with a leading U.S. appliance manufacturer to offer buyers warranties on products such as refrigerators and dishwashers.
They selected Silverline as their technology partner to develop an easy way for buyers to purchase an extended warranty. A sticker with a QR code on the appliance drove the consumer to a website where they would input their information. The Salesforce Industries system was able to quickly process the customer data and present a warranty back to the customer in real-time.
- SIF Idaho Workers’ Compensation: SIF has been the reliable and stable source of workers’ compensation for Idaho since 1917. But processes hadn’t changed to keep up with the transforming marketplace. Requesting a quote was initiated with a form, an option that was very time-consuming and offered agency staff no visibility into where applications were in the process.
SIF partnered with Silverline for implementation support. Through the partnership, Silverline and SIF developed a solution that was new within the Salesforce Industries ecosystem: a broker-facing portal with automated quoting and underwriting for workers’ compensation insurance. SIFQuote dramatically advances SIF’s digital presence in the market by replacing a traditional form-based submission process with instant quotes for a small but growing subset of new submissions.
Find your middle path with Silverline
As a consulting company with real experience in the insurance industry and expertise in Salesforce, Silverline is uniquely positioned to deliver a PAS integration that meets the needs of your agents and policyholders. We don’t take an all-or-nothing approach but instead, look at a middle path that aligns with your existing systems and business needs to set you on the right journey to digital transformation.