As we approach the end of another tumultuous year, under the cloud of a lingering global pandemic, the lasting economic impact on the insurance industry is undeniable.
Companies saw incredible losses in key sectors, like property-casualty underwriting. Analysts expect a continued drop in property-casualty underwriting as job losses and bankruptcies affect small business premiums. Unfortunately, these losses are expected to last well into the new year as companies in the retail, food service, and personal services industries continue to struggle. Projections indicate that volume will not return to pre-pandemic levels until the fourth quarter of 2022.
With nonlife premiums expecting significant growth, flexibility will be the key to stability as the industry begins to rebound. This will surely impact insurance company operations.
Here are five long-term strategies to consider as you look toward the new year, based on current insurance industry trends:
Strategy #1. Cut your real estate costs to save on expenses.
To mitigate any losses that your company may have experienced as a result of pandemic-related premium reductions, refunds, or claims payouts, your insurance company must look to optimize its expense management. In doing so, you also free up capital to encourage growth and innovation moving into the new year.
One sure-fire way to reduce overhead and save on real estate costs is to re-evaluate your company’s space utilization. Since most commercial buildings were unoccupied up to 40% of the time before the pandemic and employees have increasingly been working remotely, your insurance company could realize significant savings by embracing the hybrid workplace model ushered in by the rise of the virus.
Strategy #2. Restructure your offerings to adjust to pandemic realities.
Research indicates that the global pandemic will likely jump-start a trend toward customers seeking new types of coverage, like parametric policies. A parametric policy is typically triggered by a business disruption due to a global outbreak, for example. Other innovations expected include the development of new product offerings based on changes in individual driving habits and work environments resulting from the rise in hybrid and remote work models in many business sectors.
Staying on top of and embracing new insurance product trends coming out of our new pandemic reality will help you to keep your business successful in an unpredictable market.
#3. Stay focused on the employee experience.
Since the pandemic hit, employees across industries have been abandoning their jobs in record numbers and the insurance industry has not been spared. This trend is expected to continue and, as a result, insurance companies are going to have to keep their best people engaged by doubling down on initiatives that will improve the employee experience.
Insurance companies will need to rethink office designs, implement flexible workplace policies, and introduce new technologies to keep employees safe and connected in new hybrid environments.
Along with childcare, health and wellness are expected to be an ongoing concern for many employees moving into the new year. Studies show that nearly three-fourths of individuals cite fears about the Covid-19 virus as their biggest hindrance to returning to the office. Insurance companies should be taking these concerns seriously by instituting in-house protocols that include wellness screenings, continued social distancing, and contact tracing.
#4. Invest in technologies that improve customer experience.
Insurance company clients want to interact with you and your team on their terms, using the channel of their choice. Clients want to use their digital devices to engage in personalized interactions with agents and brokers who understand their needs. They want the freedom of a fully digital, automated experience, but they also want the empathy that can only be found in one-on-one engagement. Thankfully, there are software solutions available that can help insurance companies strike that balance.
#5. Invest in marketing technologies to increase your bottom line.
One way to protect yourself against falling victim to continued losses in the industry is to take a closer look at your digital marketing efforts and how you can refocus them for increased success. Investing in marketing automation solutions is one great way to experience growth in an economy suffering from pandemic fatigue. Marketing automation software can drive growth both through new customer acquisitions as well as existing customer retention.
As noted in strategy #4, customers are increasingly on the hunt for a more personalized experience with their insurance company. With marketing automation software, you and your team can deliver personalized content that is both relevant and timely. Using automation software, your customers can even receive the trusted advisor experience they crave, with personalized value-added content and new offerings. Great digital marketing software, coupled with a quality CRM software solution can help you turn those automated engagements into interactions between your team and the customer that can seal the deal.