What exactly is insurance B2B or business-to-business? Simply says, it is about intermediaries (including customer servicing personnel) using a point-of-sales (PoS) online platform to transact insurance requirements for or on behalf of their customers with the insurer(s) (i.e., principal). The customers usually come to the intermediary from some offline touchpoints.
Why then do we mention here about the death (including gradual dying) of the Agency Personnel operating in a B2B environment?
It was really about personal lines premiums, most if not all are already transacted over the PoS online space and for Motor premiums, transactions via PoS online were almost 100% …. The SME packaged policies are also following suit as insurers continue to find ways automating their risk selection rules and downstream processes towards a more efficient level. With this trend gaining traction we can estimate some 70% of the the GI industry premiums would eventually fall under automation in the next 12 to 24 months time.
“As B2B and B2C (which may involve B2B2C as well) system channels push beyond existing boundaries things may change disruptively….”
Since almost all B2B transactions are expected to be carried out by the intermediaries and customer servicing personnel on a full cycle basis, what value addings could the agency supporting marketers bring to the table? Especially given the fact that most PoS transactions were already automated with self-help functionalities and with policy document processing done on a straight-through basis…. Even if risks were filtered at the PoS system they would be triggered as referral cases for the underwriters to approve, and that too is being handled online seamlessly.
“Some insurers may even provide special underwriting rules for privileged agents, where the PoS system is enabled for this privileged lots to make underwriting decisions beyond the norms….”
Collection of premium due is very likely to be system controlled, i.e., if the total outstanding due hits a certain threshold then the PoS auto-shut all new premium transactions until premiums are paid.
What else is then expected of the marketers to do except to conduct new agency recruitment exercises?
Even if there were campaigns and agency rewards programmes to be carried out, such are likely done by a centralised Product & Markets Development team.
What do you think?