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"We want to set up experience centers across the country", Tarun Mathur, Policybazaar
As insurance becomes unique to individuals, Policybazaar is gearing up with specially customized services among other new initiatives. Tarun Mathur, Co-Founder & Chief Business Officer, Policybazaar speaks on the current trends of the insurance industry, data security, and more
Photo Credit : Shutterstock
What inspired the offline transition of Policybazaar?
Policybazaar has always been a customer channel, we wanted to reach as many customers as possible online. The idea is to be of help the consumer wherever he/she is. We will be a digital-only company, but it is not necessary that customer acquisition happens only online. While online services are readily accepted in Tier 1 towns, when it comes to Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities, reassurance is required. Insurance itself is a complex product, and all our customers deserve a touchpoint where they can go, clarify their doubts, go for service, etc. We want to set up experience centres across the country which are available to customers, which is the broad idea.
How is Policybazaar ensuring customer safety in an era of cyber hacking?
Policybazaar has state-of-the-art equipment for customer safety. Information is very sensitive, especially on the insurance side. We do a lot analytics around where the customer is coming from, how many people have visited from the same IP (address), what payment mechanisms are being used, etc to make sure there is no one entering our systems who is not supposed to. On the application side, we have a web application firewall. We use efficient methods & products to keep our database safe. Our tech team is one of the good teams in the market.
With more and more online businesses mushrooming, how does Policybazaar plan to stand out from the competition?
When we sit in the boardroom and decide what to do and what not to do, we put the customer first. That has kept us in very good stead throughout. A lot of companies came and died their natural death because they were a fly-by-night operation. We’re not a fly-by-night operation, we are here to stay. As long as we are aiming customer satisfaction, we are not going anywhere. For us it is not a money-making the proposition, it is to get more and more people to trust us, to build better products.
Talking about products, you have launched SME and MSME platforms. What drove this new launch and why now?
SMEs or even large corporates have been buying group insurance even before Policybazaar existed, and it was done a certain way by brokers. While expanding the products we make sure it is the employees who need to be looked into and taken care of. We understand what a retail customer is like, what an individual customer is like. We realised that a good amount of healthcare costs lie outside of insurance, so can we have entire wellness sweet that we can offer without group products. If one is looking for a whole package for an employee benefits package, then we are the guys. For example, during the lockdown people had taken to Yoga, then we consulted doctors and other experts. Following their feedback, we put these products in our insurance plan along with our insurer partners. Doing this entire process on an app is extremely accepted. We also want to be available to the employees, we don’t want them to be dependent on anyone else for their own policy.
Can you tell us about some products Policybazaar is working on which will benefit the consumers?
There are different products on different sides. A good case study for us is on the retail-health side where we have co-launched a one-crore product. We realised the health insurance sector is under-covered and under secured, and we realized customers want a large cover. When you buy online you are filling an entire form about your lifestyle habits and basis that the insurance companies underwrite it more accurately. So, an unhealthy customer is not levying a loading on a healthy customer, products like these help the entire ecosystem. Similarly, we are working on a shopkeeper product, where they can make sure that the inventory or content of their shops are ensured. More and more such products are coming into being. We are also working with our insurance partners and trying to create more & more customer centric products.
What is next on the cards for Policybazaar?
In the near time, no two neighbours will have the same kind of insurance. We will go more and more into data and apps which will facilitate more customer interaction. It will enable better customization of products & customer satisfaction. We will be catering to individual products to individual customers. We are also trying to provide more customised & new age products to a large part of the market.