“It’s Kind of Fun to Do the Impossible” 

-Walt Disney 

Since March we’ve been riding the first wave of COVID-19.  Through the looking glass we’ve tried to understand what would happen next?  How would the insurance industry be impacted by the forced innovation of the pandemic?  While the answers still may not be in our grasp,  as an industry we have moved into our next era of digital necessity and begun paving our path forward.   

This series of blogs focuses on our path forward in digital transformation.  How do we get there, how can we measure it and how do we keep moving forward  

 “There’s no telling how far I’ll go” – Moana

We never could have foreseen where we would be today.  Covid-19 has changed the landscape that is disrupting the insurance industry.  

There is a LinkedIn and Twitter post going around asking people what inspired their digital transformation.   Was it 1.  CEO 2.  CTO or 3. COVID-19.  Stark reality, right?  Of course, it’s not entirely true.  The insurance industry was disrupted long ago and many companies have been moving down a path of digital transformation for quite some time.  In fact, due to COVID-19, an IFS study showed that globally, over 50% of companies plan to increase their spend on digital transformation initiatives.   

Learn More about ROI on Digitalization

Going “digital” is the only way an insurers can meet the market expectations; the sudden demand of on-line, at-will capabilities.  Digital transformation is not a temporary fix.  It’s an imperative part of an insurance carrier’s business strategy.  Here are a few tips to help you seize this opportunity for organizational change.  

4 Tips for Digital Transformation:  

  1. Get closer than ever to your customers  Steve Jobs knew that the greatest gift was understanding and knowing your customer. However disappointing, there is still a gap between how customers want to buy and service their insurance, and what carriers deliver.  The problem does not lay with technology.  It’s a misalignment in understanding our customers’ needs and expectationsTrue transformation can only be achieved with real customer focus.   
  2. It’s a cultural thing  Be digital, live digital. Truly transform. Digital isn’t just about the technology.  It’s also an organizational shift and change in mindset.  A key to success is leadership commitment from senior leaders as well as those in transformation and technology specific roles.   Don’t be afraid to bring in someone who has a clear line of site into what digital is.   
  3. Insurtechs are not your enemy  Insurance carriers need to align their years of experience and knowledge of a complex industry with the technology innovators who can help bring automation, create efficiencies, find new ways of reaching customers.  Together carriers and Insurtech partners can prove a formidable partnership.   
  4.  Blessed are the flexible  Digital transformation is a journey.  If COVID-19 has shown us anything, it’s the need to be able to pivot and change directions.  There is no going back to the way we were before.  Challenge the status quo – re-imagine a new way and don’t be afraid to make quick changes – even if they prove to fail.  OR you could succeed beyond imagination – think working from home! 

Sometimes, in insurance, I think we forget digital transformation isn’t a one and done.  It’s an ongoing process and defining moments, like COVID-19, impact how fast we moveand what we do.  Like Princess Moana said – “There’s no telling how far I’ll go”.  Be brave, be resolute and you’ll find the right course.   

Stay tuned for my next blog in this series on continuous improvement and measurements of ensuring your Digital Transformation is paying off.