When developing new products and services, insurers should get back to basics and listen to what the consumer really wants, which may surprisingly only require simple solutions.
“What does the customer want?” should always be the first question asked when developing new products and services. Innovation must be based on customer demand and needs, and appeal to their preferences. A new product should fill a desired gap in cover, while a service should provide efficiency and ease for users.
With advancing technology, innovation is sometimes perceived to have to involve complex technology and concepts in order to impress. However, this is not always true. The most effective innovation can sometimes be uncovering a basic need and designing a simple solution.
Hiscox has done just that. When considering how to engage with brokers through an app, the answer to “what do brokers want?” was simplicity. The initial idea was to design a complex app that held quote information; however, feedback reminded developers that brokers would rather pick up the phone and speak to people. The real demand was for an app that provided ease of contact.
This led to the development of Link – an app that provides brokers with instant access to contacts at Hiscox. The enhanced “phone book” app contains a comprehensive list of underwriting and management contacts along with their job titles, and allows brokers to contact them directly through the app by phone or email. The app appeals to the way brokers prefer to operate, and has provided a service based on the demand for an easier and more efficient way for brokers to reach Hiscox employees.
What a customer or business partner wants should never be assumed when it comes to innovation. The best and most practical outcomes will be aligning products and services to real needs.
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