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Candian Life Insurance News

Taking Comparative Quoting to a Higher Level

A 2021 ICTA nomination

Toronto, ON (Apr. 15, 2021) – LowestRates.ca has saved Canadians more than $1 billion in premiums with our best-in-class insurance quoters. They are completely free to use and we provide close to 1 million comparative quotes from Canada’s leading insurance companies and brokers in the P&C space every year.

We match consumers with the lowest price direct to consumer insurance company or broker for their home and car insurance needs. Behind the scenes, we integrate with our insurance company partners to ensure that the right price is quoted to consumers. This is a massive undertaking to get correct. And when we match a consumer with a particular company, we sell that match as a lead. For our partners (brokers and direct to consumer insurance companies), we fuel their growth and success by providing them with leads made up of consumers who are perfectly matched for their offer. Partners have told us that purchasing leads from LowestRates.ca is the most effective marketing channel for them to grow at scale.

Our home and auto insurance quoters were designed to eliminate notorious pain points in the quoting process for consumers. In less than three minutes, and without needing any information outside of what is in their head, consumers can compare options from more than 75 providers to get the best price for their unique needs.

When Canadians have historically wanted home insurance, they were typically required to look up detailed information about their home to get an accurate home insurance quote — information they may not have immediate access to, such as the replacement cost, square footage of their home and distance to a fire station. If these are not provided accurately, which is all too common, then their quote can be wildly inaccurate.

We partnered with several companies and put thousands of hours into development to solve this problem and create an easy-to-use home insurance quoter that compares the market for Canadians. We work with Canada Post so that when a consumer begins entering her address, a drop down menu provides choices with accurate addresses and postal codes. The quoter also incorporates iClarify, a property insurance valuation tool that automatically fills in pertinent information about a home so users don’t have to find it themselves.

Having the right information not only improves the experience for the consumer, but also our insurance partners. When consumers input wrong information, they may be given a quote that could be considerably cheaper than what they should be paying. If that happens, our partners who buy our leads are left with a consumer who may be frustrated they are receiving a different price than they expected.

Our auto insurance quoter has similarly been streamlined to be easy for the consumer to use, and result in accurate quotes. Our quoters lead to more accurate results, happier consumers and better leads for our partners.

Home and auto insurance is a competitive space in Canada, and that means there is a lot of information out there that can confuse and frustrate consumers when they go to get an insurance quote. We have made the experience much more simple, while offering a large number of home and auto insurance providers for consumers to compare.

Our quotes are the easiest to use in Canada (due to the above-mentioned technologies), provide quotes in the shortest amount of time (due to the automation we have developed in pulling key customer data) and now provide consumers with the most choice of insurance companies to compare in the home and auto insurance space.

We believe we have developed the gold standard for insurance rate comparison in Canada with our quoters. Typically, if Canadians wanted to get multiple quotes on their home or auto insurance, this involved calls or online quotes with a variety of different companies, resulting in hours of time wasted. With our quoters, an even broader comparison can be achieved online in minutes, saving Canadians hundreds or thousands of dollars a year in the process.

Together with our partners of all sizes and types, we are improving financial literacy and redefining the Canadian financial services industry by making it easier to connect consumers with the right partner at the right price.

Benefits

  • Consumers saved almost $500 million in premiums by using our home and auto insurance quoters in 2020 alone.
  • Close to 1 million quotes were generated for consumers using our quotes in 2020 and close to 500,000 leads were sold to our partners.

Our quantitative success metrics include increased conversion, increased revenue from home and auto insurance, higher prices for our leads and a larger number of partners signing up to buy our leads.

When we updated our home insurance quoter, our conversion based on traffic to our home insurance pages increased from 29.9% to 51.6% within the first month of deployment. Due to the higher quality of leads, we have received very positive feedback from our insurance partners, saying they’ve closed more sales. Our partners have also agreed to pay more for leads — 8% more for home insurance leads, 50% more for condo and 13% more for tenant. We expect this to continue to improve as we generate more leads and bring on more partners.

About LowestRates.ca

LowestRates.ca is an online rate comparison site for insurance, mortgages, loans and credit card rates in Canada. The free, independent service connects consumers directly with financial institutions and providers from all over North America to offer Canadians a comprehensive list of rates. LowestRates.ca’s mission is to help Canadians become more financially literate, with the near-term goal of saving them $1 billion in interest and fees.

Source: LowestRates.ca

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Candian Life Insurance News

Insurers Are Leveraging More Third-Party Data Than Ever From Wide Range Of Providers

New Novarica report profiles more than 75 data providers that serve insurers

Boston, MA (Apr. 6, 2021) – While insurers have long drawn upon third-party data providers to enhance their marketing, underwriting, and claims, growing digital services and the availability of more powerful analytics have driven recent increases. In Third-Party Data in Insurance: Overview and Prominent Providers, research and advisory firm Novarica reviews multiple insurance industry use cases for third-party data, provides examples of insurers that are investing in this area, and profiles more than 75 data providers that serve insurers.

“Core systems vendors are increasingly incorporating analytics functionality into their offerings, and many already enable web service calls,” said Eric Weisburg, Vice President of Research and Consulting and co-author of Novarica’s new report. “As insurers and vendors build support for APIs and true microservices into their architectures, it will be easier to integrate third-party data, making progress toward true straight-through processing.”

Key findings of the report include:

  • Drivers of third-party data usage include AI, customer experience, cost, and regulation. The need for large data sets to train AI and customer buying experience expectations that online retailers set both stand out as relatively new motivators.
  • Privacy concerns have made data use transparency critical. Growing state regulations such as New York State’s Cybersecurity Regulation and the California Consumer Privacy Act have increased demand for transparency in how organizations use data and for what purposes.
  • Third-party data providers are consolidating, due to vendors’ desire to maximize wallet share. Data vendors are not always integrated into their acquirers, which can mean challenges for insurers consolidating their data purchases for a more efficient procurement experience.

Click here for the table of contents or to access the report.

Report Summary

Insurers continue to leverage third-party data for analytics augmentation and predictive modeling as well as for validating and cleansing existing data. The marketplace of third-party data providers is complex, with cross-industry providers, specialists, and startups all vying to help insurers.

This report reviews multiple insurance industry use cases for third-party data and examples of insurers that are investing in this area. It also profiles more than 75 data providers that serve insurers.

Click here for the table of contents or to access the report.

About Novarica

Novarica helps more than 150 insurers make better decisions about technology projects and strategy. Its research covers trends, best practices, and vendors, leveraging relationships with more than 300 insurer CIO members of its Research Council. Its advisory services provide enterprise phone and email consultations on any topic for a fixed annual fee. Consulting services range from assessments and strategic roadmaps to vendor evaluations. For more information, visit www.novarica.com.

Source: Novarica

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Candian Life Insurance News

Moving into the Digital Mainstream: NUDE Solutions

A 2021 ICTA nomination

Toronto, ON (Apr. 12, 2021) – Nude Solutions brokerage partners use our technology in two main ways:

  • Additional revenue-generation tool: brokerages use Nude Solutions in tandem with their current BMS, to generate another revenue stream.
  • Entire broker management system: brokerages switch from their traditional BMS to Nude Solutions. In addition to quote, bind, issue, change, cancel, and renew capability, brokerages have underwriting capabilities (pre-screening clients before writing risks), a built-in client portal, a marketing and sales integration (via HubSpot), and more through our platform.

Nude Solutions is on a mission to empower the insurance industry by leveraging technology. Our goal is to remove the pain and friction in the insurance process for brokers, clients, and carriers. Our platform is built by a team of insurance professionals and software developers, all on Canadian soil.

We have built a modern platform made up of eight fully integrated modules (more details below) on an infrastructure that is cloud hosted and API driven. Nude Solutions is committed to helping our brokerage partners survive and thrive in our evolving digital world by creating operational efficiencies and transforming the customer experience. We drive ROI, top-line growth and push bottom-line profit.

We value the relationships we have with our clients and nurture these partnerships by remaining steadfast in our values of collaboration and transparency. Lastly, we are continuously enhancing and improving the platform and are openly collaborative to implementing new features for an overall better experience.

The Nude Solutions platform was first implemented by Nuera Insurance in 2015. It was publicly launched for distribution in Canada on May 15, 2018.

The essential features of the technology:

  • Bond is our user-friendly, digital BMS.
  • Thru is the quote, bind, and issuance funnel with a built-in automated payment processor.
  • Periscope is our API-tied underwriting module.
  • Pocket is our client portal.
  • Podium is our referral management module.
  • Engage is our marketing and sales module.
  • Insights is our built-in data analytics tool.
  • Black is our accounting software.

Benefits:

  • 50% increase in gross written premium (GWP)
    • Brokers can write up to $3M annually using our platform. In comparison, a broker using a traditional BMS can write up to 1.5M in GWP annually.
  • Over 80% decrease in policy issuance time
    • Brokers and consumers using Nude Solutions can issue a policy in 3-5 minutes. On average, it can take a broker and consumer using a traditional BMS upwards of 30 minutes for the same task.
  • 73% of clients bind insurance without a broker
    • On average, 73% of clients who purchase insurance from a brokerage using Nude Solutions don’t need broker assistance. With some of our brokerage partners, this percentage goes up to 91%, leaving brokers more time to provide exceptional customer service and sell more policies.
  • 33% increase in broker productivity
    • This is just one of many data points from a recent study with a Nude Solutions brokerage partner. For more insights about this study view our “Partner Case Study” below.
  • $146,000 in additional revenue earned
    • A recent study with four brokerage partners showed that combined, they had additional earnings of $146,000. Many brokerages choose to use Nude Solutions in tandem with their existing BMS for the purpose of driving new revenue.

About NUDE Solutions

Founded in 2018, Nu Digital Experience (NUDE) Solutions is a Canada-based, software-as-a-service business. The Nude Solutions platform allows brokerages to thrive in our evolving digital economy by providing an online broker management system (BMS). Brokers and their clients can quote, bind, issue, change, cancel, and renew insurance policies from any internet-connected device. The platform is cloud hosted and driven by carrier application program interfaces (API). Nude Solution’s ability to connect to carrier APIs allows brokers and clients to get quotes for carrier insurance products.

Source: NUDE Solutions

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Candian Life Insurance News

Transforming A Brokerage to Serve Today’s Customers

A 2021 ICTA nomination

Toronto, ON (Apr. 9, 2021) – With a deep commitment to premium customer service, Lepelco was determined to digitally transform in order to scale the business. Their previous technology limited their ability to manage workflows, grow their commercial lines book of business and communicate with clients in their preferred way. In 2017, Lepelco selected Applied Epic as their foundational system and Applied CSR24 and Applied MobileInsured to enable the digital customer experience and a path to paperless service.

Implementation and Deployment

To meet their sales and service objectives, the entire organization participated in a detailed change management process that began with data. Reports conducted manually in excel were done directly within Applied Epic and distributed to department heads, enabling team empowerment as each group championed the implementation process and captured the greatest results for their objectives. This allowed flexibility and helped teams embrace technology to build new business models, unified team processes and results while ensuring quality data through standardized workflows to ensure longevity of critical business information as the business continues to scale.

Today

After four years as a Digital Brokerage, the team has seen significant business gains in their operational workflows, commercial lines growth, digital customer self-service, enhanced insurer connectivity and tracking across the organization.

Operational Efficiency

Lepelco operates more efficiently by taking advantage of the business process management workflows to automate, adapt and reassign tasks to ensure consistency across all users and locations. Applied Epic has eliminated time-consuming tasks required to run the business, ultimately, driving profitability by allowing the brokerage to spend more hours of the day focused on revenue generating activities.

Growth

With the Applied Digital Brokerage solution, Lepelco has the ability to measure opportunities across different geographic territories and lines of business and offer targeted marketing or service campaigns to increase revenue mix and drive profitability.

The commercial lines team can generate submissions faster, receive faster quotes due to standardized inputs and create branded proposals to win more business. Standardized commercial lines workflows eliminate individual methods of processing new business or managing in-force policies, reducing inefficiencies and potential E&O. The commercial team analyzes their book of business to identify trends that can be leveraged for growth on a regular basis through automatically generated reports which form the basis of their marketing campaigns.

Omnichannel and Self-Service

Lepelco has always understood the importance of omnichannel engagement with the insured. By extending critical information in Applied Epic via Applied CSR24 and Applied MobileInsured, their brokerage branded portal and mobile app. This integration creates flexibility to enable Lepelco to serve their customers when and how they want.

The Lepelco team and their customers quickly adopted Applied CSR24 and Applied MobileInsured. From the beginning, the employee workflows in Applied Epic included scripts and communications to seek permission to receive email correspondence about the policy. Once customers provided consent, Lepelco offered onboarding tools to sign-up for the Lepelco Customer Portal (CSR24) and App (MobileInsured). The team even created a customer tutorial video to assist customers in moving to self-service. The Lepelco team regularly review key performance indicators to review access and membership of the portal. To date, Lepelco has captured critical mass of customer emails, driving communication that is more effective to customers with 84% of personal contact email data in Applied Epic and 94% in Commercial Lines.

When the pandemic struck, the value of a Digital Brokerage solution (Applied Epic, CSR24 and MobileInsured) was more important than ever. Differentiating the brokerage brand vs the insurer brand through technology in a paperless manner became essential. During the immediate COVID crisis, Lepelco was able to send over 30,000 communications directly to clients via email where they could log into the Lepelco Customer Portal (CSR24) and securely access insurance documents. Most importantly, because these communications triggered from Applied Epic, Lepelco could be precise and personal in their outreach to customers. For example, when Intact offered a credit to auto clients in April, Lepelco could notify eligible customers under the brokerage brand. Later, when Northbridge offered a credit to Commercial Lines customers, Lepelco sent targeted brokerage branded letters/emails directly from the Applied Epic to communicate with customers based on line of business and eligibility. As brokerages navigate the path to paperless, Lepelco’s early adoption of digital proves that brokers can avoid disintermediation and scale for future growth.

Insurer Connectivity

With greater insurer connectivity in Applied Epic, Lepelco can trigger a brokerage branded letter or email. For example, a property renewal with a specific insurer can be set to send automatically at a pre-authorized time. The end-to-end communications between Lepelco and their insurer partners within Applied Epic enables the team to serve clients regardless of location and drive operational efficiency, particularly when mail is not an option. Policy data can be uploaded to insurer systems with a single click in Applied Epic’s eServicing saving time, reducing E&O.

Tracking

Leadership can quickly gain a holistic view of their business and sales teams can identify and compare their hit ratio for each line of business in a given territory so they can target specific geographies for marketing campaigns or markets with specific insurers. These metrics enable the brokerage to make better business decisions so they can ultimately drive profitability.

Lepelco is dedicated to ongoing tracking to improve operations and continue to scale. Through the tracking of activities in Applied Epic, management can measure productivity and renewals and reassign resources quickly. Each team manages a dashboard for email acquisition, which is directly tied to Lepleco’s workflows for each transaction including endorsements, renewals, new business and claims.

Benefits:

In 2017 Lepelco Group launched Applied Epic with 66 employees and $20M in premium. Today, the brokerage operates with 75 employees and exceeds $50M in premium.

Lepelco’s use of Applied Epic, Applied CSR24 and Applied Mobile Insured prove that brokerages can manage a paperless policy lifecycle within their brand and avoid disintermediation.

Data is key, and Lepelco has adopted Applied Epic workflows to capture critical contact data (84% of PL email data in BMS, 94% in CL). Ongoing KPI’s ensures continuous adoption of the Customer Portal and Mobile App. Since March, Personal Lines adoption has increased by 19% and Commercial Lines by 36%.

During the immediate COVID crisis, Lepelco was able to send over 30,000 communications directly to clients via email where they could log into the Lepelco Customer Portal (CSR24) and securely access insurance documents.

About Lepelco Assurance

Founded 65 years ago, Lepelco is the prime example of a family business, passed down from generation to generation. Focused on customer needs first, they embarked on a digital transformation for their entire business to enhance their ability to meet the needs of the modern consumer. The strategy focused on driving significant business value and extending their brand presence in both personal and commercial lines through technology. With their digital brokerage solution in place before the pandemic, it has enabled their team and customers to adapt to changes and events.. For more information, please visit assurancelepelco.com.

About Applied Systems

Applied Systems is the leading global provider of cloud-based software that powers the business of insurance. Recognized as a pioneer in insurance automation and the innovation leader, Applied is the world’s largest provider of agency and brokerage management systems, serving customers throughout the United States, Canada, the Republic of Ireland, and the United Kingdom. By automating the insurance lifecycle, Applied’s people and products enable millions of people around the world to safeguard and protect what matters most. For more information, please visit appliedsystems.com.

Source: Lepelco Assurance

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Candian Life Insurance News

Insurance Made Easy: APRIL Canada

A 2021 ICTA nomination

Toronto, ON (Apr. 9, 2021) – APRIL Canada has always had the strong belief that investing in technology is the best avenue to truly bring an excellent service to brokers. The benefits are, of course, internal because team members have more time to concentrate on tasks which require more expertise. They have more time to speak with brokers, be more responsive and more flexible in finding insurance solutions. As for benefits to brokers, APRIL believes that they can only be generated if the technology is harnessed by a co-creation effort with brokers.

When we started our APRIL ON quoting platform journey, we knew we wanted to have an in-house development team. Four people strong, the internal digital team was strengthened externally by user experience experts who helped us include our brokers at every stage of the development process. We conducted many broker interviews, trying to grasp their everyday challenges. We ran numerous user studies both on the design and on the functionalities of APRIL ON. Our goal was to offer an intuitive quoting platform that could enter brokers’ daily lives seamlessly and be quickly adopted thanks to immediate operational benefits.

APRIL ON was launched as APRIL employees and all our brokers were working from home, in the middle of lockdown. This was a challenge, but also an opportunity that showcased all the benefits and ease of use of a digital quoting platform. Brokers were able to quote at any time of the day. Their information being directly sent into our internal systems, making the underwriting much more straightforward for our teams.

Two of our driving principles behind APRIL ON was to provide brokers:

  • with a premium estimate after the shortest number of questions possible (most of the times 5 questions). This enables the broker to know right away if the price point could fit their clients wishes;
  • with a decline message (if applicable) as he/she fills our questionnaire. This is to avoid filling pages of information, sending them through and getting a decline message after some time;
  • APRIL ON is able to automatically decline the risk “live” as the information is being filled/

We now have over 1.700 brokers actively using our platform and growing every day. We also work tirelessly to improve the tool as we continue to gather user feedback. Thanks to an Agile project team working in sprints, we work on constant improvements and the introduction of new tools and features.

We have seen our service level improve drastically over the last few months, as well as broker satisfaction. We also feel our team is even more tight knit towards a common goal of modernizing our ways of working as well as keeping our broker service at the top of our agenda.

Here is what one of our brokers had to say about APRIL ON: “APRIL has been without a doubt the best MGA to work with in my experience. Not only are they providing innovative quoting services through their APRIL ON site, but they are very easy to work with and quick to respond. For example, their launch of APRIL ON went extremely smooth from a broker perspective. The website is extremely straightforward and saves a ton of time filling out questionnaires and waiting for underwriting responses.”

Benefits:

Here are some of the KPIs we follow to track broker adoption of APRIL ON, digital business volume and service level:

  • Since its launch 8 months ago, 1.700 brokers across Canada have created their account on APRIL ON. That number is rapidly growing thanks to the efforts of our Business development team, who is not only giving out credentials but also accompanying brokers as they take their first steps on our portal.
  • Thanks to APRIL ON and its ever expanding list of quoting tools (personal marine, residential, personal auto, contractors, COC, student housing…), over 35% of our gross written premium is now handled online.
  • Since June 2020, 71% of quotes in APRIL ON are quoted in less than 2 hours and 92% in less than one business day, which help us address the number one need from brokers, which is fast turnaround time.

About APRIL Canada

APRIL Canada Insurance is an insurance wholesaler (MGA). They work towards making insurance easy all over Canada. They exclusively deal with insurance brokers in order to satisfy their clients’​ needs on commercial, transport, automobile, residential and boats coverage. APRIL Canada offer a personalized service from a common mindset based on 4 values that guide our working habits: building trust, innovating, pushing boundaries and keeping things simple. For more information, please visit www.april.ca.

Source: APRIL Canada

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Read the original article at Insurance-Canada.ca