For more than 50 years, a leading small- and medium-business (SMB) workers’ compensation carrier had successfully grown across multiple states. But as the team looked to continue this upward trajectory, they recognized that some basic elements of their process – including a long, complicated submission form and a manual validation system – were increasingly becoming barriers to building the business. It was time to go digital.
- Reduce the underwriting expense ratio
- Increase speed to quote
- Reduce loss ratios
- Attract more independent agents
The team identified four main challenges in their process:
Quoting – Agents were required to answer dozens of questions, then underwriters had to manually validate all the submitted information and fill in additional required information that wasn’t necessarily part of the submission questionnaire.
Submissions – The carrier’s agents stated the submission process was too complicated and cumbersome. Underwriters spent hours validating the information manually. The overall quoting conversion rate (from a new submission opportunity to a quote) was relatively low because:
- The agent didn’t fill in all the questions; some remain unanswered
- The agent used default answers, which are not necessarily the right ones
- The underwriters found inconsistencies and discrepancies in the submitted information, which caused the underwriter to spend time investigating these answers
Accuracy – The agents’ submissions were only 62% accurate and covered just 79% of all relevant underwriting questions. The underwriters were able to slightly increase these numbers, from 62% accurate to 69%. To make the process as quick as possible for the agents, most of the submissions were not fully validated or were validated with a maximum time for manual underwriting of less than 10 minutes per field — resulting in the lower accuracy rates.
After evaluating various data providers, the carrier chose Planck due to its high coverage and accuracy (over 90% in both parameters). With Planck’s API, the carrier auto-fills supplemental questions in the agent portal in real-time, and the underwriters get a second opinion on the submitted data in their policy center. Neither the agents nor the underwriters have to gather and enter this information manually.
For the agents, the prefilled submission saves a tremendous amount of work. Even fields that they would usually skip (keeping the default answers) are currently prefilled with the actual truth.
The underwriter started reviewing the agents’ prefilled answers and additional insights provided by Planck side by side. To maximize the underwriters’ time, discrepancies between Planck’s findings and manual entries from the agents are highlighted, allowing the underwriter to focus on the answered questions and quickly catch contradicting/missing information.
The partnership with Planck delivered big picture results that helped increase revenue and save time in all facets of the process, including:
- Time for a new quote reduced to minutes
- Quote conversion rate increased
- Quote accuracy increased by over 300%
- Submission errors reduced by 29%
- Submission hit rate increased by 19%
Improved Agent Collaboration
- Streamlined prefill data
- Reduced unanswered questions or default answers by 1000%. Before Planck, 21% of the questions were unanswered, and several of the answered ones remained on the “default” response. With Planck, only 2% of questions were unanswered – a 1050% improvement
- Reduced turnaround time from days/ hours to minutes
Improved Underwriting Operating Model
- Reduced non-underwriting activities to close to zero, allowing underwriters to spend their time on risk assessment, building agent relationships, and enhancing marketing and portfolio offerings
- Enabled highly objective underwriter decision making though a structured decision-support model allows for
- Improved processing time and increased productivity
Complete and Accurate Intake Data
- Submission and work intake processes have become consistent, even when producers submit information differently and with varying quality in their support documentation
- Accurate or complete data from producers
- Significant time is saved, and there’s no need to collect data manually or wait for case data from producers
- Planck is an AI-powered dynamic data platform for commercial insurance
“Planck tech enables us to ask questions that we never were able to ask before.”
“Until Planck, our underwriting process was intensely manual and relied too much on ‘gut-feel’ decision making. Now we make decisions based on hard evidence, grounded in data and analytics.”
– SVP of Underwriting