For most people, dealing with insurance companies often feels like a slog—long waiting times, labyrinthine automated menus, and disjointed communication. Enter Conversational AI, a game-changer in the way we interact with insurance providers. This advanced technology allows for more natural conversations, making the whole experience less tedious and more efficient.
Understanding Conversational AI
Conversational AI is a specialized form of artificial intelligence designed to engage with users in a more natural and human-like manner. Unlike older automated systems that require users to engage using specific keywords or phrases, Conversational AI understands natural language. This means you can ask, “Can you assist me in filing a claim?” or simply say, “I want to buy insurance,” and the system will comprehend your request.
The technology is often manifested in chatbots that are either standalone or integrated into widely used platforms like Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp. But its scope extends to voice-activated assistants like Amazon Alexa, which are increasingly being adopted by insurance providers.
How the Insurance Sector is Adopting Conversational AI
While the insurance industry has been relatively slow in adopting Conversational AI, a shift is now noticeable. Here are some key areas where this technology is making a significant impact:
Streamlining Quotes and Sales
Getting an insurance quote has never been easier, thanks to Conversational AI. Websites like Confused.com in the UK have leveraged Amazon Alexa skills to deliver insurance quotes seamlessly. With a simple voice command, users can have quotes sent directly to their email. While it’s important to note that users still need to navigate a website or app to make the actual purchase, the time saved in gathering quotes is undeniably valuable.
Facilitating Asynchronous Communication
In traditional settings, if you were to call an insurance agent, there’s a high likelihood that you won’t get the same agent if you call back later. Conversational AI changes this, allowing for a continuous thread of communication. Companies like SBI General Insurance in Mumbai have launched WhatsApp-based Conversational AI platforms that enable users to buy and renew policies, among other functions. Users can easily pick up where they left off in previous conversations, providing a seamless customer experience.
Boosting Post-COVID Travel Confidence
Conversational AI has also played a role in rejuvenating the travel insurance industry in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. New Zealand-based Southern Cross Travel Insurance introduced a chatbot named Scout designed to provide 24/7 information and resources to travelers. Not only does this allow for immediate answers to common queries, but it also frees up human agents to tackle more complex issues.
Enhancing Accessibility to Information
Whether you’re curious about coverage for burst pipes under your home insurance or the guidelines for making a claim, Conversational AI can provide you with the answers in real time. Companies have developed smart speaker skills specifically designed to respond to these types of straightforward queries. The convenience of asking a smart speaker in your living room far surpasses the hassle of scouring through a FAQ page on a website.
Conversational AI is more than just a technological buzzword; it’s a transformative tool that is redefining customer service in the insurance sector. While it may not replace the need for human agents entirely, it certainly augments their capabilities and offers a more streamlined, efficient, and user-friendly approach to insurance services and sales. With continuous advancements in AI technology, the scope and efficacy of Conversational AI in insurance are likely to expand even further, benefiting both the providers and their customers.