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Redefining underwriter efficiency: strategies to minimize low-value tasks

Redefining underwriter efficiency: strategies to minimize low-value tasks | EasySend blog
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6 minutes

In a scenario all too familiar in the insurance industry, underwriters are often mired in the mundane yet necessary tasks that consume a disproportionate amount of their workday. Up to 40% of an underwriter's time can be consumed by non-core activities such as manual data entry and re-keying information, leading to delays and missed opportunities in risk assessment and client interaction. As these professionals struggle to manage an overwhelming volume of coverage requests, the consequences are tangible: delayed responses to brokers, inadequate risk analysis, and ultimately, suboptimal portfolio management.

A day in the life of an underwriter

Here's a glimpse into such a day, emphasizing the excessive time spent on non-core tasks.

  • Morning Routine: The underwriter's day begins with an overwhelming number of emails, each demanding attention for potential risks. The process of filtering through these to identify the most pertinent risks is crucial but inefficient, burdened by a lack of automation that could expedite this initial sorting.
  • Mid-Morning Analysis: After selecting what seems like a promising case, the underwriter embarks on a detailed analysis. However, this process is frequently interrupted by the discovery of incomplete information—missing critical documents or essential details not flagged by brokers. These interruptions force the underwriter to shift focus from risk assessment to chasing down additional data, wasting precious time that could be better spent.
  • Lunchtime Catch-Up: Lunch breaks are often consumed by administrative tasks like data correction and updating records. These are vital for maintaining system accuracy but represent a significant diversion from the underwriter's primary role of risk evaluation.
  • Afternoon Engagements: The afternoon should be dedicated to high-value interactions with clients and brokers, finalizing terms, and securing new business. Yet, it is often hampered by unresolved issues from earlier in the day, such as awaiting returns on queries sent in the morning or dealing with unexpected broker unavailability, which stalls progress.
  • End of Day Review: The day ends with a review of achievements against outstanding tasks. Despite diligent efforts, there's a palpable sense that too much time was diverted away from core underwriting duties, leaving a backlog of work and missed opportunities.

However, as technology continues to advance, new solutions are emerging that address these persistent challenges, enabling underwriters to reclaim their time and focus on what they do best—evaluating risks accurately, enhancing interactions with brokers, and securing new business. This shift not only promises to increase efficiency and improve risk selection but also reshapes the daily workflow of underwriters, allowing them to engage more deeply in strategic tasks and less in the administrative tedium that has traditionally hindered their effectiveness.

Streamlining underwriting with advanced customer interaction tools

Automating Routine Tasks

Digital interaction engines significantly reduce the manual burden on underwriters by automating repetitive tasks such as initial data collection, basic risk assessments, and routine customer queries. This automation allows underwriters to focus their efforts on more complex and nuanced underwriting tasks that require human judgment and expertise.

Enhancing Data Accessibility and Integration

Customer interaction tools facilitate the integration of disparate data sources into a centralized platform. This not only streamlines the data access process, making it faster and more efficient for underwriters to gather the necessary information, but also improves the accuracy of risk assessments. With all relevant data easily accessible, underwriters can make more informed decisions quickly, reducing delays and increasing productivity.

Improving Direct Customer Engagement

By leveraging digital tools, underwriters can engage more directly and effectively with clients. These tools support dynamic interactions that allow for real-time communication, making it easier to address client concerns, gather additional insights, and adjust policies based on immediate feedback. This level of engagement enhances the customer experience and can lead to more tailored insurance solutions.

Leveraging Real-Time Analytics for Enhanced Decision Making

With integrated analytics tools, underwriters have access to real-time data and predictive models at their fingertips. This capability enhances their ability to assess risks accurately and make informed decisions. Real-time analytics help underwriters identify trends and potential issues before they become problems, allowing for proactive management of policies and portfolios.

Collaborative Decision-Making

Modern digital interaction platforms support a collaborative environment where underwriters can easily interact with agents, claims handlers, and risk managers. This collaboration ensures that decisions are comprehensive and consider multiple perspectives within the company, ultimately leading to better outcomes and faster processing times.

Future-Proofing Underwriting Practices

Investing in technologies that improve customer interaction management does more than just enhance current operations; it positions underwriting teams to adapt to future industry changes. As customer expectations evolve and new risks emerge, having a flexible and responsive toolset is essential for maintaining competitiveness and efficiency.

By incorporating these advanced tools into their workflow, underwriters can significantly reduce the time spent on administrative tasks, focus more on strategic risk assessment, and provide better service to their clients. As the industry continues to evolve, the role of technology in managing customer interactions will undoubtedly expand, making early adoption a wise strategy for forward-thinking insurance firms. Embracing these innovations can transform underwriting from a traditional, slow-moving function into a dynamic and pivotal aspect of the insurance value chain.

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About EasySend

Transform the entire policy lifecycle, from quote to renewal, with EasySend. Trusted by Fortune 500 insurance companies, our no-code platform revolutionizes data collection processes. Effortlessly capture customer information, generate quotes, facilitate policy applications, streamline claims management, and simplify policy renewals to deliver a seamless, user-friendly experience.

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.