5 Pitfalls to Avoid When Implementing A Telematics Program

Claire Sargeant - March 25th, 2019

At The Floow, we are committed to helping our insurance partners to shape the future of mobility through the use of telematics technology and truly believe that this will make our roads safer and smarter for everyone. We work to ensure that our partners are successful with their telematics propositions so that they, and their customers, can experience the benefits that this technology offers.

It is this commitment which was the catalyst behind the webinar I hosted last week, where myself and four of my experienced colleagues – The Floow CEO, Aldo Monteforte, VP North America, John Kramer, Pricing and Underwriting Director, Jonathan Smith and Client Development Director, Zoe Sullivan – discussed the five pitfalls to avoid when implementing a telematics programme.

For those of you who missed the webinar, you can register to watch the recording – registering will give you instant access to view the content. In the meantime, here’s a quick summary of some of the topics we covered.

1. Thinking one size fits all

This pitfall focuses on ensuring that full consideration is given to proposition differentiation within a telematics programme as what works for one insurer in one market may not work for all. To develop and create a proposition that is truly engaging for your policyholders, you need to understand your customer base as well as the market dynamics you operate in, taking into account appropriate sales channels, the right device strategy and an appropriate pricing structure.

Telematics technology can be leveraged in a number of ways allowing you to build something which is more than simply a discount-based proposition. As I mentioned in the webinar; “The products that I’ve seen do well have taken the time to really craft a supporting market and channel strategy that’s appropriate to the demographic that they’re targeting.”

2. Treating telematics like a ‘science experiment’

Despite the fact that Insurance Telematics is already 22 years old it remains a somewhat nascent technology area. One of the reasons for this is that several insurers seem to treat telematics as a ‘science experiment’ rather than a core and critical part of their business and portfolio.

Without preparing and planning for scale and operational robustness from the get-go, many insurers struggle to edge past a few thousand vehicles and they fail to achieve the core benefits telematics offers.

Although using telematics as an emerging business model and pilot project can be a good way to learn and refine the policy experience, the fact is that customers are increasingly demanding fair pricing in insurance, just as they do in other service areas. In the webinar, John touched briefly on this; “Insurance customers actually see that there’s a benefit here and customers perceive insurance telematics programs as being very fair.”

3. Thinking about the scoring as table stakes

Telematics scores are increasingly important to insurers as they can enable more genuinely competitive and insight-driven risk models. Telematics scores measure and assess risk and price so when you select a telematics service provider, it’s important to consider how you will drive commercial benefit and gain market edge over your competitors by using the data and insights from scores to drive pricing models and commercial decisions.

There are two ways to do this:

  • knowing things your competitors don’t, and
  • being better at doing what you do

At The Floow, we allow our clients to gain further benefit by training scores against their claims data to create unique scoring IP which belongs to the client, allowing them to start gaining that competitive edge.

Our Pricing and Underwriting Director, Jonathan Smith, summed it up with this; “Telematics scores are definitely not table stakes; telematics scores are a core part of your organisation as a client, they are the most important thing that you can own alongside your risk models.”

4. Being process rather than customer driven

As insurance moves from being a distress purchase into an era of customer engagement where ongoing touch with end-users can be achieved easily through tools such as the smartphone, it is important that insurers are ready, and have the tools available, to start being customer driven when planning their propositions.

Telematics allows insurers to create rewarding experiences, particularly when they put a smartphone app in the hands of their policyholder, creating the prospect of regular, ongoing communication and engagement around their policy and driver behaviour.

Insurers can create these engaging and rewarding experiences by:

  • Undertaking user research to understand what motivates policyholders
  • Making the process of buying and using telematics as simple as possible through clear communication
  • Incorporating initiatives, such as discounts, rewards schemes, driver coaching programmes and in-app feedback, into a policy to encourage engagement once the initial novelty has worn off

Our Client Development Director, Zoe Sullivan, believes that it is important for insurers to; “Think about the engagement channels you are using… and although gamification and leaderboards might not be for everybody it shows how well you are driving compared to other people… giving something more than just a telematics score, it’s bringing the proposition to life.”

5. Choosing the wrong partner

“We live in an incredibly dynamic and fast moving world. In the selection of a telematics partner, we think it’s important to identify capabilities that address the needs of today but also capabilities that will be helpful in addressing the brave new world of mobility that is shaping ahead of us”

Those words from our CEO, Aldo Monteforte, sum up why we believe it is important for insurers to choose the right partner when venturing into the world of telematics. At The Floow, we aim to become the trusted partner of every insurer we work with by working collaboratively with them in the hope that we can become one united team working towards a common goal of safer and smarter mobility.

Aldo also spoke about the six key development areas that insurance partners working with The Floow can rely upon to be relevant and competitive in the marketplace over the coming years as we focus on “Helping insurance partners become active participants in the new world of mobility.”

In Summary

Our experience working with clients over the last seven years has given us a good understanding of how to successfully build and launch telematics insurance propositions. For those looking at getting started with telematics, keep the words of our VP North America, John Kramer, in mind – “Build today for tomorrow’s success.”

If you missed the webinar, please register here for instant access to the content.

To find out more about how we can help you to invest in telematics or for further information about our product portfolio, get in touch at info@thefloow.com

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