Assurance’s mission is to help people improve and protect their personal and financial well-being, and since 2016, they have helped more than 145 million people shop for insurance.
Finding and choosing insurance can be overwhelming, but Assurance IQ is out to change that. Assurance, which sells Medicare, health, life, home and auto insurance, provides personalized guidance that helps its customers protect what matters most. The company’s technology-led approach enables Assurance to provide individualized attention at scale to people historically underserved by traditional insurance sales models, such as low-income consumers. Assurance’s advanced data science tools provide its national network of 3,000+ insurance agents with the ability to customize recommendations for customers in real-time.
Assurance’s mission is to help people improve and protect their personal and financial well-being, and since 2016, they have helped more than 145 million people shop for insurance. The company attributes its success to its rigorous sales process and standards and dedication to providing an exceptional customer experience. As the company matured, they found that they needed a tool that could simultaneously scale their ability to listen to customer calls and continue to ensure strong performance from Assurance agents.
“Our goal is to confirm our agents are always doing right by the customer in their interactions and sales processes,” said Mitch Buder, VP of Operations at Assurance. “We needed to uplevel our visibility into customer conversations at scale to ensure we were delivering what we were promising.”
Listening to millions of individual customer calls wasn’t possible, so Assurance sought an AI-powered technology that could help scale quality assurance efforts and provide greater visibility into customer interactions.
Assurance offers a mix of digital and agent-supported shopping experiences for insurance seekers. Many people may start out on the company’s website, where they complete a questionnaire and view initial plan options, before opting to speak with an agent. Agents use Assurance’s proprietary technology to guide customers through a needs analysis and to ultimately present plan recommendations tailored to their unique circumstances. In addition to supporting the agent in making personalized recommendations, Assurance’s technology also prompts agents throughout the call to deliver legally required disclosures or confirmations, which are intended to position the consumer to make the most informed decision.
Buder is accountable for the sales supervision team, which works to ensure agents adhere to Assurance’s, technology-driven sales process. Prior to Observe.AI, this team organized the review of recorded customer interactions for recordkeeping and quality review. But the recordings had limited functional capabilities which resulted in a time consuming review process.
The Assurance team wanted a conversation intelligence technology solution that could provide them with deeper, richer insights into agent-customer conversations, and ultimately chose Observe.AI as their trusted partner.
After implementing Observe.AI, Assurance began to identify areas of growth and opportunity to improve the customer experience. They strategically identified and designed key Moments around their sales process and sales practices.
These two categories of Moments ensured agents put customers first on two fronts: sales process Moments identified opportunities to provide positive reinforcement when agents made customers feel understood and provided a great experience; sales practices Moments identified and flagged times where an agent provided necessary disclosures to shoppers, enabling compliance oversight at significant scale.
What is a moment? At Observe.AI we define Moments as the key points during an agent’s interaction with a customer that are important to identify at scale across all call data.
Assurance’s approach includes a prescriptive sales flow that helps agents build trust with customers and ultimately, help them find quality insurance coverage so they can protect what matters most: their health, their family’s financial future, and their most cherished possessions. As part of the sales process, agents are required to ask certain questions that will guide them to plan recommendations for the customer. With Observe.AI, the Assurance quality team can quickly listen to and evaluate calls by honing in on Moments built around the keywords and phrases Assurance expects agents to deliver on calls.
“With the help of Observe.AI, we can drill down into those key Moments we want to focus on, make sure agents are following our sales process, and offer targeted coaching where needed,” said Jean-Francois Mannina, Sales Supervision Leader at Assurance. “The Moments coupled with Observe.AI's Coaching Documentation Feature help sales managers identify opportunities to coach agents on further improving the customer experience and the agents' sales success.”
In addition to pinpointing opportunities for individual agent coaching, Buder, Mannina and their team can now analyze data from Observe.AI to identify trends across the organization and design live seminars and online training for agents to improve performance.
They also partner with Assurance’s legal and compliance teams, as well as insurance carriers whose products agents sell, to create Moments around potential sales practices concerns, such as phrases that could lead to customer misunderstanding.
“These insights help us identify compliant sales practice issues faster, support agents with quality sales techniques, generate fact-based ideas to improve our technology platform, and better cater to Americans who need insurance,” said Mannina.
Using Observe.AI, the sales supervision team can enlist sales supervisors to work directly with agent(s) and coach them on any areas that the agent needs development/education on. Observe.AI is also a helpful tool to identify instances where Assurance has the opportunity to reach out to a customer to ensure that they have been enrolled in a policy that fits their needs.
“Having technology that allows us to scan thousands of calls and pinpoint specific interactions for closer review has allowed us to take a more targeted, risk-based approach,” said Buder. “Now, managers spend more time on coaching and supporting agents, instead of listening to calls.”
Assurance IQ uses Observe.AI both for call reviews and evaluations, with reviewers documenting evaluation forms directly within the platform. Sales managers are then able to see timestamps of moments that impacted the evaluation, and provide tailored coaching as relevant. Sales managers can easily pull up the call and listen to it alongside the agent, while recording topics covered and expected outcomes. This transparent approach to coaching and feedback has led to better agent performance across the board.
Managers can also use Observe.AI’s Analyze and Dashboard feature to identify trends in agent performance over time, such as topics that consistently require coaching.
Assurance began using Observe.AI as a call listening, transcription and evaluation solution, but quickly realized it could be used to provide the visibility and transparency needed to more rapidly iterate on the customer experience at the corporate level.
“Several of our teams now benefit from using Observe.AI: sales management, compliance, and even our marketing and technology teams. The tool is easy to access and navigate, and allows us to identify areas of opportunity with our customer interactions so we can improve how we serve insurance seekers,” said Buder.
For example, Assurance regularly leverages the Calibration feature to enforce standardization across different review groups and ensure all teams have the same perspective on what is right, and where there are opportunities for improvement.
Assurance IQ’s customer-centric approach is key to their mission of helping people improve and protect their personal and financial well-being. Observe.AI now plays an important role in realizing that mission.
“Observe.AI has allowed us to seamlessly scale compliance activities in a highly regulated industry, as well as quickly iterate on our customer experience so we can provide consistently excellent service,” said Buder.