Operations Efficiency and Distribution Are Key Tech Focus Areas for Group Benefits Insurers

Pressure from plan sponsors drives carriers to improved digital capabilities: Novarica

Boston, MA (Feb. 12, 2018) – Group benefits insurers continue to face pressure on margins, while true sales growth remains challenging. This combined with price sensitivity on the part of plan sponsors, makes operations efficiency and improved marketing across multiple channels key drivers for carriers. In a new report, Business and Technology Trends: Group Life/Annuity/Voluntary Benefits, research and advisory firm Novarica provides an overview of group benefit providers’ business and technology issues, data about the marketplace, and more than 40 examples of recent technology investments by group benefit providers.

“Modern digital capabilities are key to attracting and retaining top distribution talent,” said Rob McIsaac, Senior Vice President of Research and Consulting, and co-author of Novarica’s new report. “Automation of benefits administration and enrollment, as well as integration with other core systems, is vitally important to address competitive concerns from both functional and financial perspectives.”

Key findings of the report include:

  • Sales growth is robust for voluntary lines. Hospital indemnity, universal, and whole life products in particular are showing strong growth.
  • Analytics are widely used for voluntary products. Applications include enrollment, identifying claims fraud, member conservation, sales reporting, underwriting, and more.
  • With no clear standard for group benefits information exchange, carriers are considering their next move. ACORD has proposed an enrollment standard, but with it based on one vendor’s offering, traction is uncertain.
  • Insurers are still heavily focused on bread-and-butter issues of product design, enrollment, marketing, and continuing improvement of administrative systems. Innovation is still taking a back seat to execution, although carriers are expressing increased concern about the need for “digital capabilities.”

The full report is available from Novarica. A preview of the report is available here.

About Novarica

Novarica helps more than 100 insurers make better decisions about technology projects and strategy through retained advisory services, published research, and strategy consulting. Its knowledge base covers trends, benchmarks, best practices, case studies, and vendor solutions. Leveraging the expertise of its senior team and more than 300 CIO Research Council members, Novarica provides clients with the ability to make faster, better, more informed decisions. Its consulting services focus on vendor selection, custom benchmarking, project checkpoints, and IT strategy. For more information, visit www.novarica.com.

SOURCE: Novarica