Voluntary carriers surveyed in Eastbridge’s Administrative Practices of Voluntary Carriers study continue to see increased requests for online self-service capabilities at both the employer and employee levels. Those mentioned most frequently include an online/portal for payments and bill reconciliation, online claims submission for employees, and enhanced integration of all technologies being utilized (enrollment, benefit administration, billing, payroll, etc.). Other technology-based trends mentioned by those surveyed included increased capabilities for electronic feeds for enrollment and billing, particularly with smaller-sized groups and outside vendors (i.e., benefit administration providers and TPAs) and electronic management for evidence of insurability, policy forms, ID cards, etc.
The majority of carriers are also enhancing the services provided by their call centers given new technologies available. This includes offering email intake for client inquiries and allowing call center employees to be involved with more complicated transactions like additions or terminations, policy loans, claims inquiries, and billing issues. A few carriers are also using web-chat as an additional means of communicating with policyholders.
Today’s carriers are also bringing more technology to the administration function with options for e-delivery at both the employer and employee level. Some provide PDFs to employers for them to pass along to employees. Other carriers mentioned providing employer and/or employee portals for online access to certificates and policies. This same access point is also becoming a more common tool for claims submission and status updates to clients. A growing number of carriers are either offering or developing some type of mobile application for employee self-service.
The Administrative Practices of Voluntary Carriers, a Spotlight™ Report is a valuable resource for anyone trying to keep up with the administrative demands of today’s voluntary benefit market.
Administrative Practices of Voluntary Carriers, a Spotlight™ Report
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Eastbridge Consulting Group, Inc. is a marketing advisory firm serving insurance and financial services organizations in the United States and Canada.