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Intelligent Document Processing: Enabling an intelligent and disruptive transformation for underwriters in commercial insurance

June 13, 2022 - Team EdgeVerve


Commercial insurance underwriters are a valued resource. Sadly, they spend time on non-critical activities like data collection and reconciliation. As per the McKinsey report, 30-40% of underwriters’ time is spent on administrative tasks, such as collecting data or manually executing analyses. Without data standardization, meeting every client’s varied needs on time becomes difficult. However, Intelligent Document Processing can help underwriters easily reconcile data from various sources at record speed when considering risk exposures, changing threat landscape, new business models, and industry trends to process submissions.

What is Intelligent Document Processing?

Intelligent document processing uses Artificial Intelligence, OCR, and other tech capabilities to extract data from unstructured documents and convert them into structured, usable, and consumable information. Intelligent Document Processing tools provide end-to-end automation to document-centric businesses, like commercial insurance.

In the commercial insurance landscape, the brokers and underwriters have to work with data needed for processing applications, usually shared in various document formats and layouts. The data can be available inside emails, forms, and attachments, coming in different formats, templates, images, graphs, tables, and handwritten notes. Adding to the complexity are the variations existing in the sources themselves, like using different nomenclatures or different ways applied to depict the same data. And then, there is the massive volume of documents that need to be processed daily, which creates a challenge of its own. Underwriters must process each document and extract and assess the veracity of the information shared. Hence, their task is quite cumbersome, timely, and labor-intensive. No wonder expert underwriters are an expensive resource.

Hence, variety, variations, veracity, and volume of documents are critical challenges in the commercial insurance sector. Document processing can intelligently and effortlessly address the above-mentioned issues at record speed, without any delay or committing errors. Such a tech-based solution can be a blessing in disguise for the sector, especially for commercial insurance underwriters.

How does IDP address underwriting challenges?

Apart from the above-mentioned document-related challenges, the underwriters are faced with other challenges about incomplete and unstandardized information, delaying accurate and timely decision-making. The challenges broadly cover the following:

Hence, decision-making about pricing, unnecessary risks, and incorrect rejections, adversely impacting customer experience and insurer profitability, are primarily flawed.

In order for insurers to improve underwriters’ productivity for business transformation, they need to:

Commercial insurers are increasingly adopting Intelligent Document Processing solutions to support underwriters with somewhat structured data. But, simply converting documents into data is not good enough to enhance underwriters’ productivity. The focus should be beyond simple data extraction; in other words, orchestrating processes and delivering value.

Hence, a holistic, data-driven transformation of the entire process with the help of Intelligent Document Processing tools should offer the following values:

Intelligent Document Processing: Transforming the future of underwriting

Intelligent Document Processing offers a standardized process for commercial insurers to process documents and take action quickly.

However, any change is never short of roadblocks and complexities. Intelligent Document Processing solutions cannot be implemented indiscriminately without high request volumes, organizational inertia, and lack of readiness of the team. Hence, commercial insurers should ascertain sufficient submissions to enable the transformation and the willingness of resources to embrace the change openly. Otherwise, such roadblocks would nullify the benefits of IDP implementation completely.

In a nutshell, Intelligent Document Processing can help standardize, collate, collect, validate, and analyze data, enabling the underwriters to move from high bandwidth, low-impact activities to high-value activities like accurate and timely pricing. That said, businesses should understand that technology adoption does not mean underwriters will become obsolete. Instead, Intelligent Document Processing is a fitting example of a human-machine partnership where intuition and analysis create excellent synergies.

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