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Issues on digitalization of insurance products, services take center stage as professionals seek way forward

Stakeholders in the insurance business are on agreement on the need for the industry to embrace the deployment of technology in the ongoing efforts to deepen market penetration.

This was the consensus at the recently concluded 2021 insurance professionals’ forum organized in Abeokuta, Ogun State by the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN).

One of the leading discussants at the forum and Managing Director of Heirs Life, Niyi Onifade had joined other eminent Nigerians including the Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun and the Commissioner for Insurance Mr Sunday Thomas to advocate for a more technology driven insurance industry in Nigeria arguing that the business must not be allowed to lack behind related financial institutions like the banks.

Onifade, during his panel discussion, corroborated Abiodun and Thomas when he analysed the differences between digital, digitalization and digital transformation, and charged the industry to embrace digitalisation because of the sensitive role it plays.

According to Onifade, the insurance industry serves as an insulator to every other industry and as such, must work in the pace that others are, if not ahead.

In his words, “The insurance industry plays a significant role in the economic development of Nigeria, providing support and back up for people and businesses. This means that we must be at the forefront of digitalisation and be better positioned to help them achieve their goals and aspirations continuously.”

He further highlighted the many benefits that the industry stands to gain if digitalisation is embraced quickly. These benefits, including product innovation, customer satisfaction, service excellence, fraud detection, cost efficiency and talent retention, he says, are capable of boosting the industry’s relevance, increasing penetration and ultimately, contributing to the GDP like its counterpart in the advanced countries.

Onifade’s Heirs Life has continued to be at the vanguard of digital insurance, actively pushing the campaign for digital-first approach not only with its products, but also with service.

Earlier in the year, Heirs Life Insurance Company had announced that customers can now purchase insurance products via its website, in less than five minutes, a feat that was erstwhile deemed impossible. This was followed with yet another first, the launch of a claims portal that allows customers to register claims in less than three minutes and get it settled in 24 hours.

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