Given current circumstances, it’s clear how important the role of modern technology is in the insurance industry. Without it, we wouldn’t be able to conduct this year’s Insurance Business Australia Awards – arguably the biggest night on the calendar for many insurance professionals.
This year, on October 22, the event will incorporate a virtual conference, followed by the awards announcement. So, with even this mammoth event going virtual, ahead of the celebration Insurance Business Australia spoke with David McDonald (pictured above), managing director and co-founder of The Bridge International, the moderator sponsor of this year’s Best Digital Strategy – General Insurer award, about how digital strategy is more important than ever for insurers to succeed.
“Like any other strategy, digital strategy requires you to have clear objectives of what you want to achieve,” said McDonald. “It needs a pragmatic approach to how the strategy can be implemented, and the ROI should be relatively easy to grasp.”
McDonald emphasised that insurers need to define “the moments that really matter” for their clients when configuring their digital experience. “Not every interaction necessarily needs to be digitised, but those that are should be supported by virtual chat options, video conferencing, and other methods for assisting the client’s online journey,” he said. “Digital communication is key, as customers need certainty about what steps lie ahead of them.”
For a company like The Bridge International, the COVID-19 pandemic has well and truly shone a spotlight on which insurers have invested in digital strategies – and which haven’t.
“With large workforces now working remotely and consumer expectations changing about how they should interact with an insurer, it’s a very different landscape to what we experienced pre-COVID,” McDonald noted. “The accelerated shift to digital, paired with more customers conducting online shopping, has raised expectations for digital and self-services provided by insurers. For those insurers who were already lagging behind, the gap has only increased since the pandemic began.”
Though many insurers are still developing their digital offerings, according to McDonald, COVID-19 offers an opportunity to leverage this new approach to build a more engaged client relationship.
“More emphasis needs to be placed on the creation of modular yet consistent digital ecosystems that use best-of-breed suppliers to help streamline the customer’s journey,” he said. “Hopefully, more insurers will begin to build these services so that they can leverage their core customer relationships sooner rather than later and improve their bottom line.”
The Bridge International Best Digital Strategy – General Insurer is just one of the awards up for grabs at this year’s Insurance Business Australia Awards. Register now to be a part of the event and support all the nominees.