ITC DIA Europe

(Un)covering the future: Underwriting in the Age of Digital

Written by Roger Peverelli and Reggy de Feniks - Founders The DIA Community on Dec 12, 2023

Underwriting sits at the very core of insurance. How will it change with new technologies emerging? What will underwriting look like in the Digital Age? We sat down with David Thornton, EMEA Account Manager at AI-Powered automation platform InRule, to talk about his view on the future of Underwriting.

Is AI the magical solution for underwriters?

David: “AI and ML are not a silver bullet for insurance. Generally, if your input is rubbish, you’ll get rubbish in return. Our survey on ChatGPT and AI showed there is still a lot of distrust towards these technologies. 52% of respondents in our survey distrusted ML and 54% distrusted generative GPT type products. The insurance industry will go in the direction of automation, but it’s important to have guardrails.”

Do you think that underwriters are properly empowered to handle the complexities?

David: “We get these questions all the time, particularly from Claims and Underwriting. The big question is always: “How can underwriters be more empowered to do their roles?” We talk to  underwriters every day. And unfortunately, underwriting teams have these underwriting platforms that they cannot get access to. If they want to go in and change some rules, some logic, some rates, they can’t – they need to go to IT with a change request, which works, but it can take ages. When you’re in a tight market, with fewer resources and a faster-demanded pace by the customer, it’s not the most dynamic way of trying to get the best rates out to your customer as quickly as you can. Underwriters need help in automating their underwriting process, making it simpler, and giving them control of the logic so that they can change underwriting rules and rates without having to go to IT. This also frees up IT for other tasks, instead of having to make operational changes to underwriting systems.

What do you think is the current state of customer experience in the insurance world?

“In the same survey as mentioned earlier, 74% of respondents said that they didn’t think that customer service in insurance was excellent. Now “excellent” is obviously a subjective thing. But if 74% of respondents are saying it, then they’ve hit a mark somewhere. It is a very tight market, and ultimately you want to empower your team to give the customer the best journey that you can. A friend of mine, who has been in insurance for 30 years at the front end, has now taken a role in the back office. This group-wide role is all about making sure the customer service is optimised within their group of 350 UK broker offices. They are striving to be the best they can be and putting a lot of emphasis on the customer journey to make it perfect. But, can’t we also help our customers to self-serve? To more easily provide Insurance documents? Can they get access to a rate in minutes, not hours? These are the questions that you need to ask yourselves, when thinking about your customer journey and customer experience.”

Who is InRule?

Since 2002, InRule has been passionate about making automation accessible. IT and business personnel rely on its AI Decisioning Platform to increase productivity, grow revenue and enhance customer service. Whether on-premise, in the cloud, offline, or at the edge of the enterprise, its AI Decisioning Platform enables IT and business leaders to make better decisions faster, operationalise machine learning, and improve complex processes.

David Thornton, EMEA Account Manager, InRule
Amsterdam 12-13 June

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