In the last decade for the insurance companies, it has been an era of core systems. Multiple banks and insurance companies have been spending millions in terms of implementing or upgrading core systems, core policy admin systems, core CRM, etc. From a systems architecture point of view, industries have been investing in a system of records and workflow. At the industry level, it is a time where the significant focus is on AI for the insurance sector.
With the rise in communication across the board, multiple organizations are diverging for automated and intelligent tools to speed up their response time and reduce costs. Thus, AI-powered chatbots have reached an advanced functionality replacing repeated human-supported tasks and are contributing to the organization’s digital image.
For Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance the shift to analyze and service each customer differently is critical in today’s time. Goutam Datta – Chief Information & Digital Officer at Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance shares how the use of bots by the organization showed tremendous results in enriching the customer experience.
Back in 2017, Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance introduced its AI-enabled bot BOING. Referring to the bot’s superiority compared to any other bots in the insurance sector, Datta believes the emotional intelligence and understandability of the bot is one of its focal benefits.
“Our WhatsApp-based employee or customer bot is fairly mature and can seamlessly engage with the customer. It responds to 36 types of service requests. The differentiating factor of our bot is the stage of maturity it is in, right from understanding questions to responding to them appropriately. Thus when you deal with a bot you have to give that intelligence to the bot so that not every question needs to be scientifically answered, they learn while they are being used. You may have experienced this self-learning experience while using Alexa,” Datta said.
Starting the pre-COVID times, the company introduced several AI-based chatbots that have gained momentum and saw rapid adoption of these bots. “We are amongst the top 5-6 private life insurers in the country, today. And we saw business and customers both responding to our digital interventions favorably, doing around Rs 45 crores of gross premium based on the conversation and engagements with the Bots since its launch,” he said.
Adding further, Datta says that this is the first time the company’s digital applications have witnessed a 250% increase in consumption in tier one cities in terms of the demographics of stakeholders like agents, customers, ICs, and partners, who are using it via WhatsApp and web-based platforms. The company also saw a 225% increase in tier two cities from last year to this year.
Working on other AI initiatives, Datta also highlights the use of Humanoid, which is the ability to interact with the brand through Voice, the other big thing in AI. The case in point is the Voice bots used by the organization at their call center. Datta says “Significant numbers of calls are dealt by a humanoid that is nothing but a voice bot and is AI-driven. These bots are trained to understand the context of customer calls, recognize the voice – whether it is a male or a female caller, and then best calibrate its responses to respond to the customer query. Another area where we have implemented a fairly good degree of intelligence is in fraud analytics. It gives us an understanding of whether incoming business and new business is susceptible to early claim or not.”
On the benefits of AI, Datta said “By standardizing the processes through AI systems the process becomes far more efficient and value-driven for both the customers and the company”, as it increases the consumer interactions and revival along with making the internal working model more efficient and easy for the company.
AI – data-driven Hurdles and Benefits
As AI helps in enhancing customer experience and creating a digital brand value the company also faces data challenges for the AI-driven systems. Speaking on the same, Datta addresses the corruption of the data as one of the hurdles for AI-driven systems.
He says, “If you have complex and corrupted data sets your AI system understanding would be equally complicated and corrupted. So it is important to be careful about the data. There are various facets of data along with structured and semi-structured data. It makes the data much richer and mature.”
According to Datta, the second difficulty is the unavailability of a customized solution that makes the process dependent on a generic solution that solves only 90% of the problem. He says, the better the quantity of data for the AI system, the better it is enabled to make higher quality decisions. Thus, the AI initiative and data analytics is helping the company in detecting fraud.
Expanding in this he says, “For every process, the data that you are ingesting in the system is most critical. When we put data in a system, the system analyses it from various aspects. Let’s take the example of the use of AI in our fraud detection model. At Bajaj Allianz Life, we have a very mature fraud detection model through the method of ingesting data to my AI system. The system reads customer data like demographics, education, financial background, etc., and tells us a little in advance about high propensity fraud patterns. So, more data leads to better decision-making for the bot and thereby for the company. You push the new set of data and based on this earlier understanding, it can give you a probability of the fraud happening on each of the data inputs.”
Today businesses are packed with data solutions and are implementing AI-driven initiatives for better outcomes and secure workflows. With the room opened for the opportunity, Datta believes that the possibilities of further enhancing AI for business and customer benefits are immense and companies will continue to feverishly invest towards it.