21 & 22 June 2018, Mumbai


Tapan Singhel

Bajaj Allianz General Insurance

1. How Important is Inside sales at Bajaj Allianz General Insurance?

Given its cost effectiveness, flexibility and time savings, inside sales is a fast growing business model across various sectors. But with us at BAGIC and with insurers in general, this has been a usual model of pitching our value propositions to new B2B clients, by analysing needs and pain points specific to their respective sector. Since insurance is a financial tool that requires detailed interactions to help understand the various aspects of the coverage offered and their validity for a particular risk, our sales teams create opportunities through the inside sales model. This is done by prospecting our offerings to uncharted clients, highlighting insurance covers specific to their business by deploying various methods such as gap analysis, risk management surveys etc. These deals are then closed and signed in person by the sales team, once the clients are made aware of an adequate and comprehensive risk management solution as per their risk exposures.

2. At Bajaj Allianz General Insurance Co. Ltd, how has technology played a role in customer acquisition or retention?

InsurTech is not a buzzword anymore at Bajaj Allianz General Insurance. It has seeped right through our business model, making innovation the new normal. We are industry pioneers in introducing tech centred services such as telematics based motor insurance, blockchain based travel insurance and app based renewals and claims settlements. All these facilities ensure that the customers are serviced anytime and anywhere, without getting into long procedures of filing for claims and waiting for days to get them reimbursed. Today, technology enables us to sell policies at a customer’s doorstep using tab based facilities sans any physical documentation. This has helped us sell more than a million policies, in Tier II, III cities of the country which range from the deserts of Rajasthan to the previously unattended markets in the north east. This I believe is a great achievement, as technology is enabling us to extend insurance services to the last mile of the country, in a quick and efficient manner.

3. You had started digital branches. How has it been performing?

Our virtual offices have now spread out to more than 1100 Tier II and III cities of India. This is a phygital model, where an agent is equipped with a tab, which practically serves as an insurance office on the go. From policy issuance to claims settlement, everything is done through the tab sans any physical documentation. The channel has been doing really well for us, helping us reach out to lakhs of customers, who were previously left out of general insurance offerings. This model, in addition to helping us cater insurance solutions to the highly underpenetrated regions of our country, is also generating employment opportunities for thousands of educated unemployed Indians.

4. How do you think AI is going to affect the sales for your Business?

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and applications such as robo-advisors, machine learning, computer vision, and natural language classification shall aid the automation of business processes and back-office tasks. This shall make our services more efficient, quick and transparent. Our chatbot BOING, for instance, already provides personalized customer interactions to resolve customer queries. But while AI and connected ecosystems will majorly cater to the urban crowds, aiding us in efficient client servicing, with extremely poor levels of non-life insurance penetration at 0.8% in India, the benefits of insurance are yet to reach the untapped masses. Hence I believe we are rather at a phygital stage - at the cusp of a complete tech revolution, where we enhance the entire insurance experience for a customer by augmenting digital experiences along with our offerings. Therefore as an industry, we shall continue to have the human factor involved, since insurance sales involves explaining the coverage and then converting it into sales.