Blockchain will dramatically improve the working processes between all parties and across most areas in the insurance value chain. It creates a single, shared and logical view of data. The process of buying or amending a policy, making a claim and all supporting activities should be much simpler and more efficiently completed with the majority of frictional costs removed. Distributed ledger technology and smart contracts can be deployed to great effect, improving insurers’ ROE.
Customers experience in the insurance sector still lags way behind. Blockchain allows insurers to start developing models that reduce the burden on customers such as less data re-entry, one touch buying. This can be supported with greater control over digital identity using hash functions combined with digital keys.Customers could unlock key pieces of data when required e.g. pictures of valuable items to prove ownership during a claim speeding up the process plus reducing fraud or allowing access to KYC information. The real-time data qualities and extreme low cost nature allows insurers to develop exciting and innovative new products which better suit buyers’ needs. Annual policies may cease to be the norm replaced by consumers buying alternative covers e.g. sharing economy, split products and subscription models.
Sales and administration processes are currently reliant on central systems or technology providers. Companies cease to operate if one fails. Blockchain’s decentralised nature removes the threat of a single point of failure and provides improved or reduced governance. Smart contracts are deployed to define and enforce what is allowed to happen. This will lead to the operational relationships between insurers and intermediaries becoming easier. Risk data and payments that were previously only provided on a monthly schedule will update automatically, real time and reconcile. Processes such as bordereau provision or journal uploads will be history.
JAY CAREY, Chief Architect and Co-founder,