How PNB MetLife is ‘re-imagining’ processes to cope with post Covid-19 world

K.R. Srivats New Delhi | Updated on May 05, 2020

Looking to provide product propositions on a holistic basis, says MD& CEO Srivastava

In a new normal insurance world ushered in by the Covid-19 pandemic, PNB MetLife India Insurance ( PNB MetLife) is looking to ‘re-imagine’ the entire value chain around customer engagement, a top official said.

This approach will encapsulate both the digital technology that it would leverage and the processes around customer centricity, Ashish K Srivastava, Managing Director & CEO, PNB MetLife told BusinessLine.

“In these circumstances, we are now looking at what data analytics can we do and what underwriting rules can we rewrite to see that our straight-through processing can go up. We have even taken up tele-medical in a big way. We have also redefined our claims process,” he said.

Srivastava said that the life insurer was ‘re imagining’ the entire chain starting from onboarding, propositions, processes, technology and claims.“Our new approach is more than just looking at products and needs. It is a holistic approach. Till now we were thinking product and saying this is your product for your need. We are now thinking more behavioural and engaging with customers deeply. We are talking about solutions and product propositions and not one single product,” he said.

He said that Covid-19 has presented a new normal and there would be no return to the way the world operated before the pandemic. “We know for sure that we will not return to the previous normal. We have now taken a call that 15-20 per cent of my people who worked in my corporate office and were travelling 1-2 hours for commute to work, can very much work from home on a regular basis and be more efficient.

“I am in the camp which feels that work from home can make employees more productive. In fact, we were the first to introduce work from home much before this event. For one day in a week, our HR policy allowed work from home. Now we are expanding it. This will be the new normal for us,” Srivastava, said

BCP certification

Srivastava said that the life insurer saw the Covid-19 induced lockdown coming earlier than others and had tested the Business Continuity Plan (BCP) in advance.

“As part of our BCP, we had looked at employee safety, customer focus, regulatory compliance and corporate social responsibility. This acting earlier has helped us and we have fared well on all the customer matrices in these 40 days of lockdown. We have also been able to sell 20,000 new policies in April largely through the digital channel as all our 106 branches and corporate office were closed. So our digital push helped in these trying times,” he said.

He said that the life insurer is expected to soon get ISO certification specific for its BCP programme. “In this scenario, we had lot of learnings. Earlier in our BCP, if Bombay was shut, we will operate from Delhi. If Delhi was shut, we operated from Bengaluru. But this is unprecedented. Entire country is shut down. Our early start on BCP testing helped. It now covers pandemic situations,” he said.

Digital capabilities

Post Covid-19 induced lockdown, the company has taken a relook at its digital capabilities end-to-end. “We have in the last 30 days reprioritised number of actions and identified the digital capabilities that we need. We are re-imagining the digital journey with our customers,” he said.

PNB MetLife is looking at how can it be more aligned to customer preferences, customer behaviour and customer needs, he added. The first thing that has been addressed is the digital journey.

On the product mix, Srivastava said that PNB MetLife will continue to be multi-product solutions company even as it would enhance focus on protection products. It would also be a multi-distribution channel focussed player.


Published on May 05, 2020

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