How can insurers deliver innovation without worrying about their digital identity infrastructure?

Author: Thomas Bröker

Last updated: July 15, 2021

For the latest article in our new blog series examining emerging trends and insights within the CIAM market, we are looking specifically at the insurance sector and how the industry is adopting a more innovative approach to business.

With its long-established history, the insurance sector has not always been the most receptive to change. Nevertheless, with the rise of insurtech and the recent emergence of more agile start-ups in the sector, organisations are finally starting to embrace innovation. ç

Riding the fintech wave

A number of emerging market trends have meant that insurers can no longer stick to the status quo. Ageing populations and the pressures that this is putting on government retirement programs offer huge growth potential for insurers. In fact, the enormous $240 trillion retirement and $160 trillion protection gaps predicted for 2030 underline just want a huge opportunity lies ahead for the industry.

However, to take advantage of his opportunity, insurers must show new levels of flexibility. Blockchain is one of the areas that some insurers are exploring. In particular, they are looking at how the technology can enhance transparency, reduce instances of fraud and increase flexibility. In addition to blockchain, other innovations like the Internet of Things, robo-advisors and big data suggest that slow-moving, established players are right to be wary of their more innovative competitors.

Still, it’s not just emerging technologies that are bringing innovation to the insurance sector. New business models are also proving disruptive. Demographic and employment shifts are changing what it is that customers want from their insurers. Younger individuals, in particular, now expect their insurers to provide forward-looking prevention, with 40% of millennial and Gen-Z customers wanting their insurers to provide financial, health and wellness guidance.

A balancing act

poll customer board 2021

If insurers are to start offering more innovative products and services, they must not allow these to take priority over their security protocols. Although innovation and stability have often been viewed as acting in opposition to one another, there is a way to balance the two principles.

In partnership with Onegini, Swiss insurer Baloise has been collecting data around emerging developments in the insurance industry. Our results indicate that 70.97% of individuals working in the sector view “improving registration and login processes of external users” as an important theme within their organisation over the next 12 months. At the same time, 65.75% of respondents stated that the primary driver for professionalising their CIAM capability was to make their solutions more customer-friendly. Clearly, insurers have identified the delivery of a smooth customer journey as a key priority going forward.

Of course, insurers also recognise the importance of security and trust. Since 2016, Baloise has adopted its Simply Safe strategy, prioritising the kind of innovation that will enable it to evolve beyond traditional claims handlers, while also enforcing information security and compliance. One of the key strands of the Simply Safe programme involves partnering with cutting-edge start-ups, including Stable, Bubble Box, ryd, and Devis.ch. These types of collaborations should support insurers as they look to juggle innovation and compliance.

The customer journey

Insurers everywhere are realising that delivering a straightforward customer journey is key to business success in a digital world. CIAM tools have a lot to offer the sector in this regard, from future-proofing business models to facilitating GDPR compliance. Digital onboarding, integration with iDIN, DigiD and many other electronic identifiers, as well as full support for web, mobile, and conversational platforms, are just a few of the ways that CIAM solutions can enable insurers to digitalise their operations safely.

Unfortunately, the legacy identity and access management tools relied upon by many insurance firms has left them with limited capabilities, siloed data, fragmented security, expensive maintenance, and less-than-ideal user experiences. With modern CIAM tools, this no longer needs to be the case. The market now demands that insurers create a flawless and personalised customer journey, connecting data across systems and services to deliver innovative services seamlessly. Insurance firms cannot afford to stand still any longer.

Evidently, the insurance sector is beginning to embrace innovation, with CIAM tools playing a vital role. At Onegini, we will continue to look for cutting-edge insights that deliver the best customer experience allied with the highest levels of security. Next time in this series of blog posts, we’ll examine why access management is becoming more important in the healthcare sector.