Ian Gallifant, CEO Medelinked Health Platform
MARCH 28, 2016 – Some recent industry research, sponsored by GMC Software, surveyed just over 2,000 UK adults asking them what they expect from general insurers versus what they’re actually getting.
Now, GMC is a company, that according its website, `helps companies around the world navigate the transition to digital, and engage meaningfully with their customers across the entire customer journey` so the research is clearly advocacy for their cause. But it still makes interesting reading for those of us engaged in working with health insurers and providers to make step changes in the services they deliver to their customers.
Customer communication is the Achilles heel
Its surprising conclusion is that consumers of today appear to be disconnected with the general insurance industry in a way that they aren’t with other service organisations. In particular, the research suggests communication with customers seems to be the Achilles heel for many insurers.
Given that they are essentially information businesses and the consumers want more transparency, it’s the one thing they need to be working on getting right. Yet, currently, they are accused by the research of using all the wrong channels and, according to their customers, have an inability to manage important information.
For instance, the report says that only five per cent of consumers’ insurers are using mobile apps to communicate with them – surprisingly, given the smartphone is a device that is with the consumer pretty much all of the time. But 19 per cent of consumers say they should be using such channels. Even the use of email, which has been an accepted channel for almost two decades, and, of course is increasingly accessed by smartphone, is apparently being used less than consumers would like.