Various insurance brokers now use advanced artificial intelligence system to answer customer queries. This is because AI is cheaper, often faster and can filter out spam callers. However, are insurance brokers risking alienating their real customers. Many businesses have noted their reservations to adopting Chat Bots due to the believed impact they may have upon customer service standards.
What are Chat Bots?
Chat Bots are programmes which use artificial intelligence to communicate with customers. They then relay that information to real workers, or direct the customer to the relevant department. Chat bots can, through machine learning, gain an understanding of responses over time and automate answers. They are often far faster than humans at replying, but are restrictive and follow a pattern or script. Most chatbots can respond in natural language, but they can’t improvise; at least, not yet.
‘Guide’ chat bots and ‘conversational’ chat bots differ in their coding and purpose. Conversational chat bots, which require a diverse machine learning process, have around a 30-40% rate for answering customer queries successful, says Simon Harrow to InsuranceAge.
Upon reviewing Chatbots.org, we can see the current brokers and insurers utilising chatbots. They’ve even got names; Allianz’s is called Allie, Mia answers for the Co-op Banking Group. There are many benefits leading to why chat bots are implemented by large corporations:
- Able to take on an excessive amount of calls
- Streamline customer interactions
- Filter spam calls
- Cheaper costs than hiring a human (30% of the workload for 8% of the cost)
For many large corporations, these benefits, in their opinion, outweigh the potential negative of poor customer service.
“It will allow brokers to scale up policy count without scaling up headcount. The same skills will be needed internally, they will have just have tools at their disposal to do their job faster and more efficiently.” – Toby MacLachlan
What are the popular uses of AI for insurance brokers?
Ignite CEO Toby MacLachlan believes that, within a few years, the bot will answer more than 90% of customer calls. Customer service calls are the most obvious use for AI systems, able to quickly and vastly direct multiple customers to business departments all at once.
In addition, machine learning allows bots to respond to a varied amount of queries. They can then directly solve a customers problem with information, or understand their issue and guide them to the right department. These conversational chat bots are often used for over the phone customers, or apps, Whatsapp, social media and Facebook messenger users.
Artificial intelligence is also able to instantly collect data from their calls, and deliver analytics to business departments. These analytics concern what types of calls are being made, which departments are overly busy and what the most popular queries are. These can then be acted on and addressed by the business to change the outcome for calls.
With the focus and criticism often pertaining to customer service chat bots, many forget AI can be used internally in brokers and businesses. They are used for training new human workers, simulating scenarios. Additionally for finding information and driving improvements, AI is critical. Speeding up processes and boosting efficiency, AI has a range of benefits; as well as replacing agency costs such as content creation, advertising and digital design.
The uses for AI are wide and deep, heavily embedded in the everyday workday of insurance broker departments. However are there sacrifices being made by brokers when implementing AI technology?
What are the causes for concern when using AI and chat bots?
Adopting a chat bot, businesses must compromise on customer service. There is no better service than a well-trained real individual who can fully understand and direct customers.
Emotional intelligence is also an underrated quality, making humans better listeners and communicators. Callers can often be highly aggravated or unsure, and a calming real voice on the end of the line can make a big difference to how a business is received. Chat bots are not received well by angry customers, where more time and a thorough explanation may be needed.
On the part of clients, there is an element of care and consideration which comes with talking to a real person. Live agents are more dynamic, able to make decisions on what’s best for clients in the moment. Cultural sensitivity may also need to be considered, as chat bots often cannot discern between sarcasm, jokes or bluntness.
The FCA have started to take a keen interest in the use of AI for financial businesses. Monitoring the chat bot’s customer management is critical to ensure businesses stay within regulations. AI collects data, yet information needs to be consented on the part of the customer – firms need to show how they have acted in the customer’s best interest upon using their data.
A join discussion paper published by supervisory powers in 2021 said it’s vital that the third party services firms rely on are regulated. Brokers could be putting themselves and their clients at risk by sing these third party services. Therefore, all services a financial firm uses needs to be properly regulated.
Why we believe real workers are better than AI customer service agents?
At Romero Insurance Brokers, our business model and mission revolves around treating customers exceptionally. We would never do anything to compromise our customer service aptitude.
We believe we can only properly address the concerns of our clients by having a trained experience handler on the end of the phone. Damage, floods, fire and disasters befalling your business, house or premises are some of the most stressful situations an operator can face, and therefore we believe an emotionally intelligent being is needed to start putting things right.
Furthermore, at Romero Insurance Brokers, considering we live in such a difficult economic climate in Britain, we made it known that our senior leadership team are not looking to make any redundancies or cuts. We value our employees, and firmly believe their value far outweighs that of an AI.
Far from technophobes, at the Romero Group we are utilising top of the range IT and accounting systems, ensuring the maximum safety for our finances and client data. We’ve adopted a new cloud management system, allowing us to view account details and find policies options very quickly.
Learn more about How We Work at Romero Insurance Brokers
Since we started in 1997, we’ve seen businesses of all shapes and sizes with every risk imaginable. With real people with real solutions, as a Romero Insurance Broker client you can rest assured that you are getting the best service and the best cover.
Whether you’re due for renewal or just not sure you’re getting the best deal from your current broker, let us know. We’ll work completely confidentially to review your potential exposure and let you know if we can help you.