Date: June 11, 2024

Closing the Skills Gap with Insurance Training and L&D

The insurance industry is riding a wave of rapid changes, fueled by technological advancements, regulatory shifts, and evolving customer demands. Technologies like AI and big data are transforming how insurers assess risks, process claims, and interact with customers. At the same time, new regulations are adding layers of complexity, and today’s customers are expecting more personalized, transparent, and seamless experiences than ever before.

In this fast-paced landscape, targeted insurance training and Learning & Development (L&D) strategies are more critical than ever. According to a recent PwC survey, 39% of insurance professionals think their jobs will be obsolete within five years. So, it’s no surprise that high-performing employees are focused on building long-term skills to future-proof their careers. It’s therefore important for organizations to become more intentional about upskilling. Instead of focusing development budgets solely on onboarding and compliance, it’s time to provide people with the opportunity to develop broad skills that they might not have the opportunity to develop otherwise.

These initiatives help employees stay ahead of technological changes, ensure compliance with new regulations, and meet customer expectations effectively. By creating a culture of continuous learning, insurers can enhance their workforce’s adaptability, decision-making skills, and overall performance. This approach not only keeps companies competitive but also ensures they can swiftly respond to the evolving demands of the industry. 

Challenges for Learning Leaders in the Insurance Industry

  • Macroeconomic and Global Uncertainty: Change is accelerating at an unprecedented pace, driven by economic volatility, fluctuating interest rates, inflation, regulatory factors, supply chain disruptions, skills gaps, and geopolitical tensions. This creates an unpredictable environment affecting investment returns, policyholder behavior, and overall market stability. Insurers must prioritize robust risk management strategies and adopt flexible business operations to adapt to these rapidly changing conditions, ensuring they can continue offering reliable coverage to their clients.
  • The Rise of AI, Automation, and Digital Self-Service: The use of emerging technology is becoming ubiquitous across the insurance ecosystem. As the insurance ecosystem transforms with automated claims handling and processing, AI-driven process workflows, and the use of big data by underwriters, L&D leaders must proactively ensure that technology is being utilized for competitive advantage. L&D leaders can create role-based technology learning roadmaps so that the workforce can not only learn but also apply technology for competitive advantage.
  • Transforming to New Models Like Embedded Insurance: With increasing transparency, customers are no longer settling for traditional insurance products. There is a need for a data-driven approach to developing products and business models that are aligned with the modern customer’s needs. Learning leaders must encourage innovation and knowledge sharing with partners to support these needs.
  • Increase Digital Engagement with Customers: While insurance companies need core skills like underwriting and claims processing, the workforce also needs to be skilled in emerging digital technologies like data science and cybersecurity. Learning leaders need to play a proactive role in closing digital skills gaps and building a culture of continuous learning. The use of skill-based repositories as well as personalized learning plans and platforms to address skill gaps are vital to the modern insurance workforce. 
  • Growing Focus on ESG for P&C Insurance: Emerging as a top priority across all sectors, Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) considerations within Property and Casualty (P&C) insurance, reflect a broader shift towards sustainable and socially responsible practices. Learning leaders must develop training programs about the importance of ESG principles, recognizing the variations caused by climate risks, social impact, and corporate governance issues. Successful value creation happens when an organization’s purpose, ESG efforts, and business strategy are integrated.
  • Talent Acquisition and Retention: While COVID-19 restrictions are decreasing across the world, business models have changed, and many insurance workers are also looking for the same flexibility in their work life – many are not ready for full-time in-person work and are looking for more flexibility, advancement opportunities, and greater compensation. Learning leaders must sense this change and work with talent management teams to create flexible work models as well as provide avenues for learning in the flow of work.

NIIT’s Specialized L&D Services for Insurance Companies

At NIIT, we have spent decades working with insurance companies to transform every aspect of L&D from modern and innovative learning systems to immersive learning for customer service and claims training to redefining onboarding programs for frontline employees. Our specialized services for insurance companies include:

Managed Learning Operations NIIT’s comprehensive suite of Managed Learning Services delivers value on both sides of the L&D value equation for insurance companies. On the one hand, we help you align L&D goals with business goals to deliver tangible business impact. On the other, we help you maximize L&D effectiveness and efficiency. Whether it is transforming large-scale learning operations including administration, learning delivery, vendor management, or strategic sourcing, our services are designed to work with the complexities of the insurance industry. When it comes to large-scale learning operations, our goal is to provide you with a dedicated team that does all the heavy lifting so that your internal L&D teams can focus on strategic objectives and outcomes.

Immersive Content for Customer Service and Claims - As one of the largest and most capable providers of custom content in the world, we cover all modalities and levels of learning. We have seen transformative results with the use of immersive learning for insurance. For a leading national insurer, our 360-video immersive intervention reconstructs accidents to help accident claim representatives assess damage in a virtual environment and manage claims with empathy and accuracy. Our virtual onboarding programs for a leading insurance company across 27 global markets help onboard agents in a faster and more engaging environment. We have significantly reduced time to competence for new hires by redefining claims training for a leading national insurer. Whether it is recreating a property lab or training agents to engage with customers in a digital environment, our team of content experts meets you where you are.

Cutting-Edge Technology Platform for Learning in the Flow of Work - NIIT’s award-winning Learning Experience Platform for insurance agents is developed in collaboration with a leading Fortune 50 global insurance company. The platform enables hyper-personalized role, tenure, and performance-based learning journeys through custom and curated content for each agent. Powered by artificial intelligence, the academy maps learning with performance to offer real-time insights, analytics, and performance support. Every agent on the field can take advantage of extensive features like social and collaborative learning, role plays, skills practice, coaching and mentoring to improve productivity and performance. With multilingual options and offline synchronization, the platform works across developed and emerging markets.

Case Study: A Transformative Learning Ecosystem to Drive Sales Performance

Challenge: Our Fortune 50 financial services client operates globally, serving millions of customers across nearly 50 countries through various distribution channels, including traditional agents and newer avenues like Bancassurance, Direct & Telemarketing, and Employee Benefits. Seeking to enhance customer experience and gain a competitive edge, they aimed to strengthen distribution capability and differentiate themselves with insights from big data analytics and digital sales training. 

Solution: NIIT worked in close partnership with our customer to develop a Salesforce Performance Development ecosystem or Distribution Academy Platform (DAP). DAP leverages artificial intelligence, data analytics with hyper-personalization to give the learner the advantage of digital and immersive learning and practice combined with social learning and collaboration, on-the-job coaching, sales activity management, and real-time performance support.

Result: Since August 2009, the Distribution Academy has been implemented in 27 global markets. Over 40,000 users engaged in 461,158 hours of online learning in 2023. The average productivity and ticket size of business sold for Sales Associates supported by Distribution Academy is typically at least 20% higher compared to their historical peer group who went through classroom training.

Download the case study to learn more. 

Outsource Your Insurance Training & Learning to NIIT

In an insurance landscape where embedded insurance, digital self-service, increasing AI and automation are transforming traditional models and ways of working, your L&D function needs to be one step ahead of the learning curve. As rising attrition makes it harder to acquire and retain talent, large-scale insurers must transform their L&D ecosystems to provide learning in the flow of work to upskill and prepare their workforce for the changes ahead. 

At NIIT, we’ve helped many insurance companies align L&D with business priorities to deliver tangible business impact. Explore how our managed training services can drive the success of your insurance organization.