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Five lessons the insurance industry can learn from banks about video KYC
Banking industry has been an early adopter of vKYC, with RBI approving V-CIP processes back in January 2020, and can provide some templates for Insurers to understand the big opportunities of ‘new’ customer experiences, as well as the potential hurdles that wait ahead.
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The IRDAI’s recent decision to allow insurance companies to leverage vKYC (video KYC) technology marks an inflection point for the industry. Insurance companies now have the opportunity to transform their KYC process and potentially grow the number of, speed with, and efficiency for customers they onboard, even in the middle of this pandemic. A recent PwC report estimates that the pandemic has resulted in a 30 percent decline in business for key insurance players.
Banking industry has been an early adopter of vKYC, with RBI approving V-CIP processes back in January 2020, and can provide some templates for Insurers to understand the big opportunities of ‘new’ customer experiences, as well as the potential hurdles that wait ahead. While there are many more, let’s take a look at the top five lessons the insurance industry can learn about vKYC from the banking sector.
1.) Guiding user journeys: the key to VCIP success
Users want a simple, quick, and relatively pain free experience. All the time. This requires building a robust back-end to limit bottlenecks that could affect performance, as well as implementing a user- friendly, mobile-forward interface that users won’t have to wrestle with. Among banks, there’s a vast disparity in vKYC completion rates, from 40-45 percent at the lower end of the spectrum, all the way up to 85 percent with solutions from some key industry players. Successful players design user journeys with users at the centre, and not technology. Consistent, well-guided, and convenient user journeys lie at the heart of successful virtual customer identification.
2.) Automated queue management: an overlooked customer experience factor
When it comes to a high traffic function like vKYC, insurance industry can benefit immensely from automated queue management. Given the agent-interaction (manual) layer - intelligent queuing is a necessity for vKYC. AI-enabled, automated queue management can substantially reduce the time involved in setting up, sequencing, and following through on individual KYC applications, eventually leading to a higher completion volume per day. Automated queue management can deliver a much more productive vKYC completion rate, thanks to lower processing time and a more responsive process. Practically, a well automated vKYC queue can deliver 10-15x more productivity for each agent, by cutting down the friction in user switching (imagine traveling from one customer’s residence to another’s).
3.) Concurrent auditing and automation
Concurrent auditing is a security and compliance requirement baked into both the RBI’s and IRDAI’s decisions in favour of vKYC. Conventional concurrent audits are limited, sampled and error-prone. Automated concurrent auditing, on the other hand, can be expanded to full audit at a fraction of time, cost and resources. Automated concurrent auditing technology, with augmented intelligence (fuzzy logic, document checks, etc.), that tracks every transaction, flags problem transactions as they occur. Automated concurrent auditing can ensure 100% visibility and transparency, as well as reduction in overall compliance costs.
4.) Managing Innovation & Adoption with Insight
Understanding the impact of vKYC in terms of time, effort, and money saved, is vital to its greater adoption. Decision-makers benefit immensely from effective insights dashboards, helping them identify trends in completion rates, flag issues, and view quantitative insights into the impact of vKYC, both for the customer onboarding experience and the overall bottom line. Quite often, the intelligence from a system change is deferred for later. For best in-class vKYC processes, they’ve been a part of the product strategy. Often the insight layer is critical for agile innovation to deliver the highest possible value in short term
5.) Freeing the user and expanding (market) possibilities
A vital advantage of vKYC on a whole — and something insurers stand to benefit from in this time of extreme isolation —users can complete onboarding from anywhere (as long as they’re within India, according to geotagging). It allows businesses to identify “similar” markets where they can expand to, onboard customers (with confidence), and unlock the potential that an innovation like vKYC can bring to the table. Unlike the past, when we are competing with digital first insur-tech innovators, the cycle time to test these decisions needs to be high and our offerings need to be competitive (across both, product and customer experience). Considering the 80-85% journey success rates that solutions like Kwik.ID are delivering even in low bandwidth locations – there is an opportunity to open new markets in rapid succession and create experiments that unlock long-term value.
There is an all-pervasive uncertainty, and steps like vKYC are great regulatory nods to keep businesses moving forward without inherently exposing people (or the business itself) to greater risks. Insurance penetration in India is low, and there is an opportunity for the best in class players to use this ongoing crisis as an opportunity and transform the customer acquisition landscape for the industry at large. How well and with what urgency the industry players jump on this rocket-ship will likely determine the pace at which the sector recovers to its pre-COVID growth trajectory.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.