From paper pushers to pixel pioneers

Although insurers face unique challenges, the rhetoric that traditional carriers risk being usurped by new tech and disruptive start-ups is way off the mark.

Addressing delegates at ILC’s Home & Property Conference, which took place at Silverstone Race Circuit in November, Rob Stewart, Head of Sales, Claims Consortium Group, said that actually the industry has a proud tradition of moving with the times and it would do so again.

He said it’s true building relationships with customers is more difficult now that it has ever been and adapting legacy systems makes it challenging for traditional insurers to adapt as nimbly as some of start-ups.

But despite these obstacles, Rob was optimistic that the sector would remain not just relevant, but critical to customers.

He said, “Insurance is cyclical. In 1985 DLG launched and they changed the insurance landscape by doing something completely different. Before them, customers had to get insurance through a broker. But DLG changed the game by dealing directly with customers and the rest of the industry soon followed suit.”

Call centres and 24-hour helplines quickly followed, and one result of this evolution was a much closer relationship between insurer and policyholder.

However, that relationship has waned since the rise and rise of aggregators. Insurance became transactional and price-driven, with many customers unaware even of who their insurer is and not having any contact with them at all until the point of claim.

“This means there is a lot of pressure on insurers at the point of claim to get it right and serve the modern customer’s need,” Rob continued.


However, legacy systems often leave insurers trapped in the old ways of working. Instead of replacing them completely it’s possible to bolt new tech on to existing systems and build around them, but Rob suggested that it could time to rethink the claims journey completely.

He said, “The claims process hasn’t changed much in last 40 years; maybe we need to think about what perfect looks like and then build that rather than build around what has always been there.”

Fundamental to this, he said, was sharing data on an open and transparent platform, and attracting new talent able to bring in further innovation.

He concluded, “Looking to the future, it’s not doom and gloom. We’re experts at adapting and innovating, and I think we will again. We’ll build things to meet our customer’s needs. But the secret to getting ahead is getting started – and that can begin with small steps.”

ILC’s Home & Property Conference was headline sponsored by Claims Consortium Group; Gold Sponsors Rainbow Restorations, Catalyst, Clearspeed, LexisNexis Risk Solutions, Perfect Group, Polygon, Pulse, and Wiser Academy; and Silver Sponsors Crawford, eVolution Claims Management, Home Repair Network, ICEYE, Prime Disaster Response, Safeline Environmental and SD Claims.


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