Why Digitization Matters Even More in a Post-Pandemic World
The past year has dramatically widened the gap between insurers that have invested in digitization—and those that haven’t.
No reasonable person would argue that the COVID-19 pandemic is over (or even close). But according to the CDC, on April 6th more than 108 million Americans—including 40% of all adults—had received at least one vaccine dose, and nearly 63 million people were fully vaccinated. With this rapidly accelerating vaccine rollout, a more normal, stable world feels closer than it has since the pandemic began.
As a result, insurance companies are examining the longer-term impacts of COVID-19 and trying to define what “normal” looks like for them in a post-pandemic world. The past year has both initiated and accelerated fundamental shifts in people’s habits, preferences, and expectations, and most of those changes appear to be permanent.
In 2021, Great Digital Experiences = Business Success
As insurance companies explore the impacts and implications of these changes, one thing has become very clear: Digitization is at the center of the industry’s post-pandemic normal. In 2020 alone, digital adoption in the insurance industry grew 20% globally, which was nearly four times the compound annual growth rate of the prior four years. This digital transformation surge has affected every part of the insurance policy lifecycle, from marketing and digital policy serving to claim submissions and payments. And according to a recent J.D. Power U.S. Claims digital Experience Study, 84% of claimants said they used digital at some point during their most recent claim experience.
These numbers highlight the fact that today, more than ever before, consumers simply expect their insurance companies to provide them with convenient, frictionless digital experiences—whether it’s researching and purchasing a policy or filing and receiving payment for a claim. And the digital leaders that deliver those experiences earn consistently higher loyalty and Net Promoter Scores (NPS) than the incumbent insurers that have been slow to embrace digital transformation—or that provide incomplete or unsatisfactory digital experiences.
Keeping Pace with Younger, All-Digital Rivals
So if digitization is such an essential requirement for insurers in the post-pandemic “normal,” how do you keep pace? It’s a complicated question, but the 50,000-foot answer involves combining an all-in commitment to digital transformation with a smart digital strategy and strategic partnerships with fintech companies that can deliver parts of a complete digital experience quickly and efficiently. This approach makes it possible for insurers to create convenient, end-to-end digital experiences that capitalize on and complement their existing expertise, people, processes, and services.
Optum Financial Is Ready to Solve the Claim Payment Piece of Your Digital Equation
Claim payments is a prime example of how the right fintech partner can help accelerate your digitization journey. This “last mile” in the claims process is often overlooked. But with a partner like Optum Financial, digitizing claim payments can be a quick, affordable win that delivers the modern and convenient payment experiences your policyholders are looking for. It’s a proven and practical way to stay ahead of today’s turbocharged digital payment trends—and one more digital tool you can use to thrive and grow in the post-COVID normal.