The Insurance Learning Experience

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The insurance industry finds itself navigating an unprecedented business climate, impacted by the pandemic, sheltering in place, and economic challenges. Unfortunately, the pre-existing issues that insurance companies faced before COVID-19 remain unresolved, creating a complex and dynamic landscape for the industry.

Challenges Uncover Heightened Pace of Work

The ongoing talent crunch poses a significant challenge for insurance companies, particularly in the realm of skills. High turnover rates coupled with a large proportion of managers and leaders approaching retirement age intensify the need to attract and onboard fresh talent, especially in emerging business segments. To retain expertise in-house and fend off competitors’ efforts to poach knowledgeable workers, reskilling initiatives have gained traction, allowing companies to nurture their existing workforce.

Furthermore, the insurance sector has faced an upsurge in catastrophic events, such as hurricanes, tornadoes, and wildfires, disproportionately affecting companies within the property and casualty segment. These incidents have emphasized the urgency of streamlining claim processes to meet client needs more efficiently. Additionally, the pandemic has induced rapid changes in health insurance processes as companies adapt to evolving medications, testing procedures, and healthcare protocols.

Amidst these challenges, consumers now wield more power and insurance choices than ever before. The ease of comparing and switching providers online compels insurance companies to continuously innovate their products and find ways to elevate the customer experience.

Impacts on the Learning Experience

Interestingly, all of these challenges underscore the increased urgency for insurance providers to empower their agents, streamline claim processes, and introduce new products at a faster pace.

However, the learning infrastructure within insurance companies is struggling to keep up with these demands. Outdated, complex, and disparate systems hinder the ability to address these challenges effectively. Agents, call center employees, and claims adjusters need to possess comprehensive knowledge about policies, coverage, and processes to swiftly assist customers in their time of need. When essential content is buried in binders or inconsistently dispersed across locations, delivering a sense of consistency becomes challenging.

Enter Operational Learning

A large Learning Management System (LMS) might excel at delivering static knowledge, but for agents in the field requiring real-time information on specific screens, the conventional LMS falls short. With rapid changes in the environment, accessibility, and content relevance become vital aspects that demand a more dynamic learning approach.

This is where the concept of operational learning emerges as a promising solution. Unlike traditional learning approaches led by HR or organization development teams, operational learning is steered by a specialized team closely aligned with the line of business. Their mission is to develop and deliver learning content that directly supports business execution. This dynamic approach caters to “deskless” workers out in the field, enabling faster onboarding, equipping employees with up-to-date knowledge, and accelerating the rollout of new products.

For insurance companies to thrive amidst these challenges, they must shift their focus towards delivering learning in the flow of work, rather than having learning act as an obstacle to productivity. By embracing operational learning and integrating learning seamlessly into the workflow, insurance companies can empower their workforce to navigate the evolving demands of the industry effectively, ensuring continued success and growth.