Now more than ever, the importance of digital transformation is being embraced across horizontal and vertical markets, spanning business-to-business and business-to-consumer models. From telecommunications, healthcare, and financial services, many industries have seen adoption and significant changes as a result of digital transformation and the insurance industry cannot be left out
Perhaps the most critical thing to bear in mind is that companies, of all kinds, will not be able to carry on without the help of technology that is accessible through digitalization, making relevant the popular quote by Jeff Bezos, “there is no alternative to digital transformation. Visionary companies will carve out new strategic options for themselves – those that don’t adapt, will fail.”
Today, technology gives companies the opportunity to use artificial intelligence (AI) and the internet of things (IOT) to offer deeper insights and greater speed and efficiency of services to meet the ever-changing needs of customers.
A recent study by Celent, the leading research and advisory firm focused on technology for financial institutions globally, shows that the digital transformation of the insurance industry is in full swing as it offers opportunities to improve performance and customer experience. It also continues to pressure firms to change.
In Ghana, the insurance industry has seen rapid growth, with the proliferation of private insurance companies and brokers. Insurers are continuously facing pressure to keep on top of emerging business models and technologies across board to reach a limited sophisticated customer base, with certain traditional insurance processes that have been resistant to change for many years becoming digitized and data-driven insights for delivering efficient services that stand out.
Adapting to changing circumstances and rising to new challenges is something we at Old Mutual have been doing for 175 years. We keep innovating and improving our business processes to make the life of our customers easier.
As such, we introduced innovative WhatsApp-based insurance policies JustCover and Black and White Family policies to help manage risks and protect families in simple and convenient ways. JustCover for instance is an on-demand travel accident policy that provides cover for individual road journeys from city to city in and across the county by public transport.
With just GH¢3.00 you can secure instant cover to any trip in Ghana. Are you traveling with the VIP bus to Kumasi or you are using Intercity STC to any part of Ghana? The Old Mutual JustCover allows you to insure yourself for any of these trips within Ghana.
Even better is the fact that the entire application and claims process can be managed simply and conveniently through the WhatsApp Messenger App in the case of an accident. Users are given emergency cash as soon as Old Mutual is notified of an accident to help pay for any immediate medical attention required.
Furthermore, the JustCover platform provides customers with benefits that extend beyond the insurance cover. It seeks to fill the social need and the common tragedy of the country’s inability to identify victims in the event of an accident.
Black and White Family Policy on the other hand which is inspired by the Ghanaian Black and White cloth clad during funerals, is a digitalized funeral policy aimed at offering seamless investment solutions that protects families from the expenses that come with putting together a befitting funeral. With the use of the WhatsApp messaging app, families can easily sign up for the policy which is designed to help families make sound investments that will protect themselves from the brunt of funeral expenses.
In an age where information can be accessed and shared at the click of a button, it is imperative that technologies are a vital part of insurance and Old Mutual has made it a point to blaze the trail with our Black and White and JustCover policies.
According to the latest annual report from the National Insurance Commission, Ghana’s insurance penetration rate stands at less than 2%, largely because of delays in the payment of claims, complex underwriting processes, expensive premiums among others. Black and White Family Plan has tapped into this biggest messaging app (WhatsApp) to reach and enable Ghanaians to bridge this gap in a simple, accessible and convenient manner.
Ghanaians can now invest in a funeral plan just by saying Hi to 0242 426 455 on WhatsApp and following the interactive prompts to experience real time convenience in insurance services. Payments are made within 48 hours of reporting a claim after providing satisfactory proof of death.
In the same vain, with JustCover, once notified of an accident through WhatsApp, our support agents will immediately begin contacting emergency services and loved ones to alert them and check up on potential victims to ensure they are fine. With Old Mutual, and the use of Africa’s favorite messaging app, we have made insurance easier and better. Ghanaians have no excuse not to jump on the train of insurance to protect themselves and their loved ones.
There is no alternative to digital transformation and to remain relevant in today’s world, services should make life easier for their customers and digital technology is seemingly the best way to deliver on efficiency for those you serve.
>>>The writer is the Head of Marketing and Operations at Old Mutual Ghana