Customer experience and distribution innovations appear to offer North American insurers the best return on their innovation investment dollars, according to our analysis. Since agents are largely responsible for the customer experience and expanding distribution, we recommend insurers focus their investments on innovations that will support the work agents do.

Last week we looked at the types of digital innovation investments insurers can make to support agents as growth seekers. This week, we’ll take a closer look at how insurers can empower agents as collaborators.

What does it mean for an agent to be a collaborator?

People working together within an organization improve the company at its core. Collaboration encourages a sharing culture, connecting people and teams, strengthening the human experience within the company and pushing employee potential. In fact, it’s difficult to overstate the importance of agent collaboration in building and expanding business value.

Agents possess immense amounts of information. With a collaborative mindset, they can share this knowledge with their colleagues, something that’s especially beneficial for new agents joining the team. Fostering a collaborative environment not only accelerates the work agents do but also cultivates relationships that ultimately benefit the business.

What do agents as collaborators need to be successful?

To maximise the potential for collaboration, insurers need to foster open communication among team members and agents across departments and in different regions. By connecting with others, sharing moments and diverse experiences, agents can grow their expertise. They can also find other colleagues with complementary skillsets.

Insurers need to enable full visibility into new products, campaigns and policies as well as provide guidance to help agents meet their daily tasks and longer-term goals. But primarily, they need to empower agents with ways to share, learn and network with other agents.

Where digital innovations can empower agents as collaborators

For insurers wondering where to place their innovation investments to help agents collaborate and perform their best, we recommend you focus on the following:

  • Monitor agent performance and automatically match it to business KPIs.
  • Provide agent visibility and ease of agent task division to managers.
  • Provide new product and campaign information so managers can assign agents with sales opportunities.
  • Provide structured networking possibilities by using internal expertise to learn, share to enhance performance and track progress.

Whether agents are captive or independent, the collaboration will help them build stronger relationships with customers and meet their goals, and those of the insurer, faster.

If you’d like to talk about how Accenture could help your organization support and empower agents during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond, at the same time making the most of your digital investment spend, don’t hesitate to reach out to Jim directly.

To learn more about our research into digital innovations, read our report: Where’s the payback on digital innovation in insurance?

Disclaimer: This content is provided for general information purposes and is not intended to be used in place of consultation with our professional advisors.

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