With over 50 years of experience providing workers’ compensation coverage across multiple states, a leading small- and medium-business (SMB) workers’ compensation carrier was looking for ways to continue its profitable growth.
One of the lowest hanging fruits was to leverage third-party data to prefill their agent portal and feed their processes with validated data. This would 1) reduce the underwriting expense ratio, 2) increase speed to quote, 3) reduce loss ratios, and 4) attract more independent agents.
The quoting process requires the agent to answer dozens of questions and the underwriter to manually validate all the submitted information and fill in additional required information that isn’t necessarily part of the submission questionnaire.
The carrier’s agents complained that the submission process was too complicated and long, and the underwriters spent hours validating the information manually. The overall quoting conversion rate (from a new submission opportunity to a quote) was relatively low due to the following:
- 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.
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%. That was partially because, in order 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.
After evaluating various data providers for insights on SMBs, the carrier chose to work with Planck due to its high coverage and accuracy (over 90% in both parameters). With Planck’s API, the carrier autofills 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 anymore.
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 carrier was able to dramatically reduce the overall time for a new quote, from days to minutes. It also increased the quoting conversion rate by providing consumers with a fully automated portal and giving the underwriters accurate insights that simplify the manual validation process.
The accuracy of the submitted information increased by over 300%. The submission errors went down from 38% to 9% – a 422% improvement. When considering the underwriters’ accuracy, the errors went down from 31% to 9% – a 344% improvement. The coverage (hit rate) of the submissions increased from 79% to 98% for all of the questions.
Making use of the actual value of its insights, Planck continues to expand the segments that the API is integrated in. The company regularly adds new underwriting insights that haven’t been asked before and that have a high correlation to the risk, thus reducing loss ratios without further increasing friction with the agents.
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 to minutes
Improved Underwriting Operating Model
- Reduced non-underwriting activities to close to zero. Now underwriters spend most of their time on risk assessment, building agent relationships, marketing and portfolio offerings.
- A structured decision-support model allows for highly objective underwriter decision making.
- Faster processing time and increased productivity
Complete and Accurate Intake Data
- Submission and work intake processes have become consistent, with unified intake formats (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.
“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
“Planck tech enables us to ask questions that we never were able to ask before.”
Planck is an AI-powered dynamic data platform for commercial insurance
Planck provides the most accurate data insights on SMBs to commercial carriers, using an artificial-intelligence-driven data platform. Leveraging deep industry expertise and breakthrough data science, Planck streamlines the commercial underwriting process by aggregating small and medium businesses’ digital footprint to help insurers acquire a comprehensive understanding of customer risk.
For more information, visit https://planckdata.com.
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