Digital Technology
Mar 14, 2018

Digital won't succeed unless you humanize it

Get your staff on your side by letting them help build solutions

In an increasingly digital environment, many insurers are making significant investments in transforming their organizations to ensure success. As they do, it's critical for insurance leaders to recognize that digital is not just about the technology but about the end-user experience that it brings. This experience affects your customers, brokers and — just as important — your own employees, who often get neglected.

I've delivered a number of business transformation programs that involved implementing new enterprise technology platforms. The one common theme in most of these programs is that they focus on driving efficiency and cost takeout. Yet they often overlook how transformation can have a positive impact on the end-user experience.

During end-user training and rollouts, I've had claims handlers or underwriters tell me that the fancy new toys we introduced indeed did a lot more things than the old system could. But then they'll add that it was so much faster to get things done on their legacy green-screen systems. For those core members of the operation, the bells and whistles of the new system had completely disrupted the efficiency they had achieved with their legacy platform. It had upset their way of working and caused instability, poor performance, and other unexpected quirks.

The biggest advantage that today's digital technologies bring to companies is greater agility. These technologies help companies develop solutions faster — and iteratively improve them over time. But it's important to recognize that these are just technologies for solving business problems. Unless enterprises address inertia to change, any new system will only disrupt existing efficiencies and increase resistance. Not making the case for change is a big reason why technology transformation programs fail.

About the author

Arjun Mathai

Arjun Mathai

Vice President – Digital, Digital Insurance Transformation Leader for Europe

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