Last year, Oracle found that eight in 10 businesses are either using artificial intelligence currently, or plan to start using it within three years or better. The task? Customer service. There are two main approaches to using AI in this area: in the first, front-end bots chat with customers with no human reps required. In the second, human reps leverage AI tools to do better at what they do.
According to Adelyn Zhou at Forbes, the advantages are not in question: chatbots speed handle time, increase first-contact resolution rates, save money by reducing escalation to higher-cost support, and capture some serious efficiencies. What's not so straightforward is the transition from bot, to rep, and back again.
Multiple request types? Difficult transitions
"Even the best bots still struggle when faced with complex user queries," Zhou said. "Without a proper escalation protocol, bots may cause user frustration instead of solving their problems. Furthermore, many enterprises also have a wide range of service requests that fall under different resolution categories, often requiring human agents to evaluate and identify properly."
Insurers field a wide range of service requests, from new customer inquiries to claims submissions. If AI is to be leveraged effectively here, the question of AI protocols must be addressed at the core.
Still, the advantages are unequivocal. The Forbes Agency Council identified seven ways in which AI can make a significant difference for organizations attempting to connect with customers, ranging from exciting developments in adaptive marketing to the ability to generate feelings of engagement.
Case in point: meet Lemonade
According to Alison Moodie at the Guardian, AI could go so far as to make insurance trustworthy again. "In a recent global survey from accounting firm EY, consumers ranked insurance below banks, car manufacturers, online shopping sites and supermarkets for trustworthiness," Moodie said.
Meanwhile in NYC, however, the insurance startup Lemonade is putting AI to work smoothing the process for customer signup and claims approval. Thanks in part to artificial intelligence, the company replaced "endless paperwork" (in one customer's words) with speed and transparency (to borrow from UC Berkeley lecturer David Charron).
"Lemonade is able to screen applicants or claims quickly because its software can quickly pull data and cross-reference information about a particular home or neighborhood from a variety of sources," Moodie said. They use algorithms to decide whether a claim should be handled by a chatbot or a human. So far, the experiment is paying off.
The FedNat Insured Web is a great tool for our insureds!
They like having a centralized location to view policy info, make payments, upload policy documents, and elect to become paperless to receive a discount.
The insureds also can file a First Notice of Loss for a claim and access exiting claim info. Silvervine recently enhanced the site which allows insureds to upload policy documents directly to their policy. The uploaded docs go directly into our workflows and save a lot of manual effort on our part.
From my visits with agents, the agents appreciate the app for the amount of time saved on having to download and attach photos directly to the policy.
The app can also reduce the amount of staff required for a busy office to fulfill underwriting requests for photos.
When training agents they are amazed at how quickly the photos attach directly to the policy. After taking photos using the app and before they make it back to their desk, the photo is already attached to the policy. They also like the ability to attach additional photos for pre-existing damage.
Customer Service is seeing an improvement with retention as the text message definitely triggers phone calls from insureds to make payments.
The insureds love the fact that we notify them on their phones because they state that sometimes they don’t receive their mail for various reasons.
The insureds are paying more attention to the texts then to their actual mail. We try to set all of our customers up on that option if we notice that they are not currently enrolled, as it builds great customer relations as well as retention.
As a company we have adopted the use of Policy Scan for all our policies, and our agents have adopted the use of the app as well.
Not only is it easy to use, there is also no more worrying about losing photos, having to store photos or photos being attached to the wrong policy.
With Policy Scan we have increased efficiency in our workflow and reduced our exposure on the risk.
Silvervine’s core administration solutions easily handles multiple carriers within multiple states, including accounting, payment processing, immediate policy issuance and endorsements.
What started out writing one product, one line in one state has now grown into mulitple products, multiple lines and writing in multiple states. We have over $95 million in annualized premium in-force and we expect to grow by 20% during the next year all serviced by Silvervine.
Silvervine was our insurance software system of choice when we started the company in 2006. Silvervine enabled us to begin business within a few months of licensing the company. Today, we are one of the top 20 homeowner’s writers in Texas and SIlvervine’s solutions have been an integral part of our success.