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Rishi Mathur – Is Insurance Going the Digital Way?

Vivek Law: Hello and welcome to this special series Finance Made Simple. Joining me today is Rishi Mathur who's the Chief Distribution Officer – Alternate Channels and Chief Strategy Officer at Canara HSBC Life Insurance. Thanks very much, Rishi for joining us today on this customer education series that we've put together. Rishi, we saw a fairly significant move towards digitization in 2020. Thanks to COVID when it comes to the life insurance sector, from onboarding to claim settlement. How do you see this trend continuing in the future once COVID recedes? Do you think people will get back or companies like yours will get back to the physical mode or are you going to further reform and push digitization?

Rishi Mathur: So, there was already a pace which was there in terms of digitization of the insurance sector. COVID has taken that pace to about 2x or 3x of what was happening earlier. What was earlier a small part of the industry which was converting to more digital modes has suddenly become a very large part of the entire industry and the insurance process moving to digital. I think now a very balanced mix of digital and physical assets and resources are being used to make sure that while we reach out to all customers in a way they are most comfortable with currently. So, there's a new focus on contactless processes, there are newer ways and innovative approaches on how to do remote selling and these are the areas where digitization has impacted every part of the insurance sales process. And I think that this is a deeper shift that has happened and is not something that will fully revert to a completely physical process. This is here to stay. Customers are now much more open to DIY experimentation. They would like to do things themselves, understand them better. They're also more in favor of things where they can manage the entire process remotely and these changes are there to stay and we are evolving to make sure that the process is aligned to that. So, this near-normal of even with the pandemic going away is going to keep these processes in the same way. The other big change that is happening and is underway is about data so when we are using more digitization means we are getting more data on customer behavior, we're getting more data on the sales process and that is invaluable in terms of how we can modify our journeys, modify our processes to make them, even more, customer-friendly to make them more seamless and easier for the customer. That's a one-way door, I mean that's something that would go ahead because it leads to better customer benefit, and the industry as well as all insurance customers will benefit from that. So, I would say that the digitization juggernaut is going to keep going ahead and we're going to see an increasing part of the insurance industry digitize their processes irrespective of the channel. So, whether it's selling through banks or selling through an agency or selling online or servicing customers - all of these processes will look more digital a year from now as compared to what they were in 2019.

Vivek: Alright, Rishi. Thank you very much for joining us and sharing your perspective with our viewers. It's been a pleasure talking to you.

Rishi: Thank you, Vivek. It was a pleasure.

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