6 Ways Technology Is Making
Flood Management Better
In recent years, technology advances have streamlined processes throughout the flood management ecosystem. That means more flood insurance providers can help more at-risk Americans protect their homes with a flood insurance plan designed for their individual needs.
Here’s a rundown of six key ways technology solutions on the market have improved every step of the flood insurance process for policyholders, agents, insurance carriers, and adjusters alike.
1: Micro-Censusing Enables Better Risk Assessment
Readily available tech makes it possible to gather granular data about individual homes and properties and use that data to calculate risk at the property level, which is called micro-censusing.
This method of data assessment makes it possible for insurers to create more accurate flood policies. In the past, risk models focused on region or neighborhood and overlooked property-specific risk factors.
Micro-censusing will transform NFIP policies: Risk Rating 2.0, expected to launch in October 2021, will leverage this technology to deliver fairer rates to policyholders.
More precise risk assessment can translate to better community preparedness in low-risk areas. With a fairly priced policy that accurately reflects lower risk, homeowners may be more likely to get coverage, which will make more people – and their communities – more resilient to floods.
2: Automation Streamlines Time-Consuming Manual Tasks
Automation can significantly streamline time-consuming manual workflows involved in sales and claims processing and organize customer information. This way, back-office staff can get more done, and agents can focus on building relationships with customers. Exciting examples include…
- Tech that matches a property in a claim to the photo in policy documents to save claims professionals time on processing.
- Automated transcription services for customer calls save agents time on mandated documentation.
Automation speeds up the overall flood insurance process and makes more time for one-on-one conversation while cutting back time spent recording information and filing paperwork.
3: Digital Applications Save Time
With a straightforward digital application, agents are in a better position to walk prospective customers through the application much faster. Whereas it previously took over five minutes to complete an application, our NFS platform Trident makes it possible in just 40 seconds, with most risks getting quoted with just seven responses.
4: Mobile-Friendly Sites Make Solutions Available Anytime, Anywhere
Many technology platforms for agents and customers are available on mobile-friendly sites. This allows both parties to handle applications, policy management, and claims at any time from the app, without the need for an insurance representative to be in-office sitting in front of a customer’s paperwork.
When a flood hits, customers may not be home due to an evacuation, and they’ll need a way to start the claims process from wherever they are. Because they can access platforms on their phones, which people always have on them, filing a claim becomes much easier and more practical.
5: Virtual Adjusting Streamlines the Claims Process
Adjusters are now able to evaluate properties virtually via mobile apps, video calling, and drones.
This is especially helpful in the era of social distancing and COVID-19. But even when we’re not in a pandemic, flood claims adjusting is often difficult because of floods themselves. Roads may be impassible, customers may be evacuated, and adjusters may have hundreds or thousands of claims to process.
Meanwhile, customers want to handle claims immediately so they can return to their homes. Virtual adjusting is much faster because the adjuster doesn’t have to travel to a physical location, which allows customers to quickly settle claims and come home sooner.
In the wake of COVID-19, the NFS team has started distributing claims payouts within just five days of a virtual adjusting session.
6: End-to-End Digital Platforms Combine it All
Fortunately, all of these tech benefits can be rolled into a single platform.
Digital flood insurance platforms on the market (like Trident) leverage innovations in data, automation, and mobile. This platform versatility equips agents, adjusters, and back-end offices with an efficient, all-in-one toolkit for every piece of the flood insurance puzzle.
For agents especially, a digital platform provides an opportunity to sell and manage more policies, grow their books, and become a trusted resource for customers.
Flood Insurance Technology Is Adaptable
Perhaps the most important feature of all technology solutions currently transforming the flood insurance landscape is that they’re highly adaptable. The flood risk landscape is always changing (due to seasonal patterns, climate change, and real estate development, among other reasons), as is FEMA and the private insurance industry.
Flexible technology platforms enable the people who use them to update and adapt to industry or policy changes at any time. Faced with an uncertain future of flood risks, technology gives insurers a sustainable way to uphold best practices and serve their customers’ changing needs.