The Need for Insurance-Centric CRM

In May 2018, we announced the launch of Guidewire’s first P&C insurance customer relationship management (CRM) applications for Salesforce Financial Services Cloud. Prior to the announcement, I was excited to learn about the offerings and the work that went into it, and I had so many questions. At the top of the list was “Are there customers using it or in line to use it?”

Sure enough, there are. Now that it’s been announced that Amica will be the first company to leverage two applications –  developed as part of the partnership between Salesforce and Guidewire —Guidewire ProducerEngage™ and Guidewire ServiceRepEngage™ for Salesforce Financial Services Cloud — I was eager to ask some of the other questions about these offerings and what they mean for the industry.        

Salesforce Director, Insurance Industry Solutions, Jamie Bisker, and Guidewire Vice President and Business Owner, Digital, Ayan Sarkar, and have agreed to answer some of these questions.

Q: What changes have you seen with CRM and customer experience in the P&C insurance industry over the past few years?

Bisker: In the past P&C insurers battled it out for agent business. While that is still the case, insurers now have to do all they can to improve the experiences of their agents, service representatives and customers. They know they are being compared to other insurers and to companies from other industries that have set the bar for digital experiences. Running a customer-centric operation requires more agility, speed, and functionality than it used to.

Q: What inspired the Guidewire/Salesforce partnership and resulting products? What was the need, and who was telling you about this need?

Bisker: We’re always looking for ways to improve our insurance customers’ speed to market and to help them integrate with the systems they have running on the back end. About five years ago, Saleforce began a verticalization journey, and the first and largest sector to take on was financial services, including insurance. We feel Guidewire understands this imperative.

Sarkar: We often see the requirement for Guidewire customers to integrate the capabilities of InsuranceSuite with Salesforce. By integrating with Salesforce’s Financial Services Cloud, Guidewire Digital unleashes the power of the underlying CRM platform to enhance customer engagement and empower users to deliver superior customer service. We’ve also been focused on lowering total cost of ownership for our customers. Reusing existing Guidewire InsuranceSuite configurations avoids costly duplication and improves maintenance.

And, most importantly, we’ve received customer feedback over the past couple years that they’ve perceived a gap between world-class, horizontal, CRM capabilities and leading, vertical, insurance capabilities. This partnership bridges that gap. What we’re delivering is really a managed package that is installed on top of Salesforce Financial Services Cloud. It combines the rich functionality of InsuranceSuite and the Guidewire Digital Services platform with the CRM expertise of Salesforce.

Q: Does an insurer have to already be a Guidewire InsuranceSuite and a Salesforce customer to employ these products? What does an ideal insurer look like for these products?

Sarkar: ProducerEngage and ServiceRepEngage for Salesforce Financial Services Cloud make the most sense for P&C insurers that are starting to launch or have recently launched a digital transformation program.

Q: What does the future hold both in products resulting from the partnership and in CRM in general? Are there capabilities the industry needs to keep its eye on?

Sarkar: We’re always looking at ways to help our customers be successful. We are committed to, and investing heavily in, our relationship with Salesforce, and this involves helping customers in an entire transformation journey.

For more information about Amica and its use of ProducerEngage and ServiceRepEngage for Salesforce Financial Services Cloud, view this webinar.

Ayan, Jamie, and other Guidewire, Salesforce, and Amica executives will be participating in a Connections 2018 breakout session, "Pushing the Boundaries of the Customer Experience with Salesforce and Guidewire," taking place Tuesday, October 16th at 3:45 p.m. in Mouton #2 at the Wynn Las Vegas.

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