Health Equity Exchange discusses consumer experience with the Health Insurance Industry at
‘Customer experience’ has been an area of focus for a long time in a number of industries. The phrase has been used for such a long time that it almost reached the point of irrelevance, yet customer experience is the key to success. This is no different in the Health Insurance industry, but how do health insurance professionals discover what would be a dream experience for their ‘end-users’. After all, the interaction with the end-users usually starts ‘at the point of claim’. Benefits of insurance policies are often discussed with employers or other intermediaries between the ‘end user’ and the Health Insurance provider. The incentive therefore for the Insurer is to ‘please the intermediary’ not the end-user.
Conference ‘corridor talk’
In the corridors of the conference, I’ve heard that “the Insurers learn what end users want from agents. This is because ‘end-users’ are inquiring about the availability of various types of insurance. While this is certainly a feedback that we should pay attention to it does not give an excuse to abdicate responsibility for developing the ‘next generation’ of the value proposition. Such approach puts the hurdle of developing new and innovative products ‘on the consumer’.
It is as if we were expecting a consumer who used to use VHS tapes to have told us that he prefers DVD or streaming. How could (s)he know? You are the industry expert and it is your responsibility to develop new value propositions.
How do you develop a new value proposition?
How do you do this is a very good question. I loved a comment of one of the presenters – Martin Kroos; Head of Claims in Achmea, one of the largest Insurance Companies in the Netherlands: “You can’t think out of the box if you are still in it”. It is sometimes astonishing how many times you may not even realize that “you are still in the box”. Breaking such thinking is sometimes a great challenge.
If we use the VHS tape example again – this is the situation when you are so focused on improving the quality of the tape, trying to make it perfect without even noticing that the World has moved on towards streaming.
Is this about automation and technology?
Well, if you don’t automate and don’t keep up with the changes that technology brings, you risk being overtaken by competitors or even taken over. I am sure it’s not the future you are hoping for, so technology needs to be implemented (and indeed a number of companies have done it already to a greater or lesser degree).
Technology, however, is a tool. Finding out how to augment your existing value proposition to make it more valuable for your ‘end users’ is still your responsibility. How do you want to use technology to make it even more attractive to your ‘end users’ is the next question.
The view “outside the box”
Health Equity Exchange is not in your ‘box’! We work with your ‘end-users’ and across industries. We are ‘mapping’ the journey that your end-user experience before (s)he knocks on your door and even before you start to feel unwell. We are close to medical researchers and doctors to understand the causes, trends and most recent approaches. We are working across industries, as innovation seldom comes from the ‘internal innovation department’. Please contact Health Equity Exchange to find out how we can help you with developing a value proposition that goes beyond “improving what you currently offer”