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16 tips to improve digital claims experience in insurance

16 Tips to Improve Digital Claims Experience in insurance | EasySend blog
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9 minutes

The insurance industry is changing and digital claims experience is a key component. Claims situations themselves are often sensitive and stressful for the customer already. Moreover, the claims process itself can be a daunting one. A good user experience at this crucial touchpoint helps create an easier transition from a period of uncertainty into receiving support after accidents or injuries have occurred.

User experience (UX) represents how customers perceive value from product interaction.

The user experience of the digital claims process can directly impact customer satisfaction, loyalty, and trust in the insurer. In a world where people are always looking for ways to save time and effort, it's no wonder that user experience in insurance claims matters. With the state of mind customers have when filling out claims forms - they need their insurer now more than ever before! And if you want them to come back as loyal brand followers, you must guide them through this process with a user-friendly digital journey instead of taking up hours off their day with lengthy paperwork.

Giving your clients simple, easy experiences from the start gets things rolling. This means happier consumers who will tell all friends about what great service or product you offer them because these small touches go such a long way towards building trust.

Users demand simplicity and convenience when it comes to online transactions. From start to finish, the experience should run smoothly, taking multiple steps, procedures and workflows into account. In addition to basic layout issues such as font size and color schemes, other factors come into play that can have a major impact on the digital experience for consumers within an insurance company's digital channel

However, ensuring that the digital claims procedure is seamless and frictionless for the customer is not a simple undertaking. The digital claims process can be challenging to navigate for both customers and employees. Insured may need to complete numerous forms before gaining access to health care or other benefits. Oftentimes, this leads to multiple customer service calls, long cycle times, friction and lost time. In order to remain competitive, it's important that insurers focus on improving insurance user experience in the digital claims process.

Here are 16 tips to improving insurance claims experience:

1.Create digital journeys, not one-off interactions

Digital claims are completely different from traditional paper claim processes because they require a digital-first approach. For digital claims, providers and medical practices can create digital journeys that take into account the entire customer experience.

This means that when a person applies for insurance coverage or makes changes to an existing policy, they should be able to access digital channels such as website, chat, e-mail and mobile app in order to communicate with their insurer at any time on any channel—not just call center —in order to complete their digital claims journey.

2.Ensure a smooth UX throughout

When it comes to digital touchpoints, no interaction is too small. Something as simple as an error message or slow load time on your website can have huge consequences for UX down the road. 

Your digital claim process should follow industry best-practices when it comes to both insurance user experience and user interface design. By doing so, you will stay on the cutting edge of digital claims technology as well as provide a positive digital customer experience.

3.Apply intuitive navigation 

As we mentioned earlier, the entire digital claims experience should be simple and easy to understand. This means that customers should not need to scroll through lengthy pages of information, excessive forms or complicated navigation before submitting a claim.

It's also important to remember that people are familiar with using mobile apps for banking and shopping, which is why they expect some of the same experiences in insurance claims.

For example, people are used to navigating apps with certain design patterns such as three vertical dots, which act as a navigation menu. It's important to keep this in mind when designing digital claims processes so customers don't get lost while navigating through your claims journey

4.Eliminate paperwork-based thinking

Your digital journey should be a reflection of your company’s brand, not just an online version of a paper process.

A digital journey is a step by step process that slowly unfolds as the customer completes each part of their digital claim. By strategically placing these steps in a meaningful order, you can help ensure smooth sailing throughout the entire experience. 

Digital journey is different from digital touchpoint, which is the digital process required to complete a one-time action. Digital journeys are more dynamic as they consist of digital processes with multiple steps that unfold over time. Make sure to design the digital journey from start to finish by thinking about how you want customers to feel when they complete their claim.

5.Create a fast and frictionless process with self-service channels

Reducing the time it takes to resolve a digital claim is critical for customer satisfaction, as well as for driving digital adoption within the insurance industry.

Customers should be able to easily access their digital claims information, track the status of their claim and upload documents by using self-service channels. This is why it's best to implement technology that provides actionable insights about claim status without overwhelming customers with unnecessary information or steps.

6.Don't forget about the "after-the-claim" communication

It's very important to create a customer engagement plan that includes communication with customers after the processing of a claim. Customers should see this as a value add and not just something extra you're throwing in for good measure.

Maintaining communication after the action is complete is an excellent way to not only increase engagement with existing customers but also attract new business by showing how your company cares about its customers.

Happy digital claims user | EasySend blog

7. Use the right technology to support your claims process

It's important to use the right digital claims and insurance suite that can help you implement a claims process that is not only faster, but also more efficient and cost-effective. The best way to do this is by making sure you partner with an insurer platform provider that offers a tailored solution, instead of using a one-size-fits-all solution.

For example, if you're looking to provide customers with an end-to-end digital claims process that includes the ability to upload documents and track claim status, then look for a software platform that supports these capabilities. Otherwise, your new claims process could be another siloed solution that doesn't accomplish your goals and can lead to increased costs for you and friction for customers.

8.Use data and analytics to improve claims experiences

Customer analytics provides insight into how customers interact with your insurance claims processes, which helps insurers identify where they are falling short in terms of meeting their end-customer needs. This data can be used to identify the claims processes that need improvement and which customers are struggling most.

For example, you might find through analytics that your customers tend to not upload documents for their claim, so instead of adding a cumbersome step, you can use technology such as Intelligent Document Capture (IDC), which allows customers to submit scanned images of documents through your claims process.

9.Use chatbots for improved customer service

The next tip to improve the insurance claims experience is to use technology such as chatbots to help automate services and reduce wait times for customers. Chatbots are not only easy to implement but also cost-effective, so it's a great way to level up your service offering without breaking the bank.

By using technology solutions designed to increase efficiency, you can help your claims processes run smoothly, which ultimately benefits both customers and insurance providers. This creates a win-win for everyone involved in the claims process and results in increased customer engagement and retention, as well as more successful business relationships

10.Digital information intake and data gathering from start to finish

Digital claims can be time consuming and even frustrating. To make the whole process easier for your customers, digitize information intake where possible. The insured should not have to search through their files or email in order to find a claim number or digital signature from years ago when they are just trying to get access to health care right now.

In addition, by providing users with simple-to-access digital options, you'll reduce the number of errors caused by data entry mistakes or poor handwriting. 

11. Pre-populate fields

Instead of asking for information that is readily available on the insured's policy, have the customer enter their ID number or email address to pull up the claims number or policy number from your internal systems so that you can access the data you already have in the backend. This will prevent you from having to ask them for information you are already in possession of.

12.Validate data at the point of entry

Utilize validation features on your claim intake journeys. This is especially important when it comes to claim forms such as invoices for medical services rendered where even a single misplaced digit could result in delayed payment or underpayment.

13.Stop using PDF as a data gathering tool

Don’t use PDFs! PDF is the digital equivalent of the dreaded paper forms. The file format is difficult to work with because it does not allow the user to interact or fill in information on mobile devices. This makes for a frustrating experience and can prevent your customers from completing their claims quickly enough.

While some tools such as DocuSign have been gathering traction, the core of the problem - the bad user experience of PDFs still remains.

Why use PDFs for gathering customer data when better options exist?

14.Make it easy to upload documents

Use an intelligent document capture solution for quicker and easier data gathering. This allows insureds to take pictures of documents rather than having to search through their records to find the information they need.

Make sure it is easy to upload any supportive documentation. You may need digital photos of the injury, X-rays and lab results, prescription slips or receipts for out-of-pocket expenses. Make it easy to upload these digital documents in one simple step after entering the claim number.

If you provide customers with access to their personal files, make sure you have a secure way for them to share these files with you.

15.Utilize digital signatures

Make sure you have digital signatures from all parties available at every stage of your digital journey: insureds, providers and insurers necessary to pay the claim all should be able to sign digitally whenever possible during any interactions throughout the entire digital insurance claims experience. This concerns both the internal processes, as well as the digital communications with end customers.

Ensure your digital signature is up-to-date and secure for accurate, compliant digital signing of documents. 

16. Digital claims, anytime, anywhere

Provide a variety of options for delivery methods such as email, fax or mail depending on what works best for your customer. 

Make sure that digital claims procedures are accessible across all devices (laptops/desktops, tablets and smartphones). Users should be able to file a claim from anywhere, at any time, while still having an option to receive customer support via phone if needed.

Make sure that any digital forms or documents are accessible in a mobile-friendly format. This will ensure your customers can complete these digital claims no matter where they may be when filling out their information.

User experience is the key to making customers happy. During the claims process, it's time for the insurers to give their customer something simple and easy that will make filling out paperwork less stressful.

Vera Smirnoff
Vera Smirnoff

Vera Smirnoff is the demand generation manager at EasySend. She covers digital transformation in insurance and banking and the latest trends in InsurTech and digital customer experience.