By Steve Dorn, SVP Strategic Product Group, FINEOS
In 1999 Bill Gates, former president of Microsoft wrote a book titled “Business at the speed of thought”, little did he realize how prophetic that statement would resonate in 2014 for the insurance industry. At a time of intense competition, expanding insured needs for self service, and aging technologies, the very foundation of how we transact insurance is in the process of upheaval . With the steady rise of Group and Voluntary benefits, Health Exchanges, regulatory changes like the affordable healthcare act and the shift in employer’s views on benefits, insurance companies are quickly scrambling to re-engineer service delivery models that can quickly address these new market requirements. If Bill Gates wrote the same book today he might very well retitle it as “Insurance as a H2H experience”….Human to Human.
Front and center of that conversation is who will truly be our final customer. Traditionally, that was the employer in a B2B (Business to Business) model. However, as listed in a recent 2014 Towers Watson report, employers are seeking new ways to optimize their health care benefit investment. What that means is employers have begun cost shifting and employees will become an active decision maker in their own coverage choices. As employees bear more of the cost, they will expect to have a greater range of coverage options and greater control in tailoring those options to their specific needs. For the Insurance Company that means a greater pressure on self service solutions, the ability to remove complexity out of the user experience, to make insurance simpler to buy and the ability to create micro sites customized to the individual user needs. That means you have to be able to reliably extend your Policy, Billing and Claims operations to the insured in way that all the complexity is hidden, and the ease of the user experience reflects the perceived customer service level. This new model is not a B2C (Business to Consumer) model, it’s an H2H (Human to Human Model) where insurance becomes a personalized experience. Expect this trend to pick up steam as nearly 50% of employers surveyed expect to increase employee contributions in the coming year and one third plan on raising employee deductibles. That employee today is a millennial, who grew up surrounded by technology and innovation. Today the millennial consumer is the largest group in the workforce and is forecasted to represent 75% of the workforce by 2025. They have higher expectations and demands for the user experience and what technology should do in an H2H model.
So how will these shifts in consumerism and the new H2H employee empowered Insurance model impact core legacy insurance company solution? To start with old technology layered across multiple systems is flawed with cyber security and compliance risks. It’s also plagued with complexity and compatibly dependencies between systems which can result in greater business interruption risks for your clients. Extending a “quilted” IT platform over the web could be disastrous for the quality of your brand and ultimately your customer. Just to illustrate how important a single topic like security can be to your solution look at the recent Target security breach which has cost the company over 148 million dollars plus the loss of consumer trust. These problems will only get bigger as business demands grow in IT and more systems get add to the IT portfolio. The job of providing a secure, flawless, simple and tailored experience to the customer will get harder and hard to achieve the longer organization wait to act. Having a single, comprehensive core insurance delivery platform with common configuration setups, universal data definitions, system controls, audit features, common integration services it not an optional luxury in this H2H model, its fundamental to providing the customer experience your clients will demand and ultimately key to your organizations future success.
That’s were FINEOS Corporation can help your organization meet these new market demands and support your H2H strategy. As the global leader in core insurance technology for the Group Disability, Life, Accident and Health industry, FINEOS can provide you a single system solution capable of fully supporting Group, Voluntary and Individual lines of business. FINEOS products are open, modern, flexible, rich in function and are delivered with industry best practice business content and pre-configured rules. We can fully support your H2H customer experience on the web, tablet or mobile device and is an ideal solution for small organizations as well as large enterprises and in multi-national insurance carrier ‘shared service centers’.
Our mission is to be ‘ the global market leader of group and individual insurance technology on a single system’ by helping our customers care for the people they serve through the delivery of superior insurance technology and services. To learn more about FINEOS products and services, find us on the web at www.FINEOS.com