Medical and life insurance company Vitality has outsourced user technology and telephony services to French IT services company Atos for three years, following a £9m deal.
Vitality, which has VitalityHealth and VitalityLife as insurance brands, rewards customers through a range of discounts and incentives to motivate better lifestyle choices.
The contract, which includes an option to extend by two years, aims to create a more intuitive and user-friendly IT environment, with a modern workplace and digital platform for employees.
Better collaboration and communication between employees is also an important goal for Vitality, with instant messenger facilities expanded and rolled out to encourage better communication. Furhtermore, the process of setting up technology for new recruits and for people that move within the company will be made easier.
VitalityHealth CIO Mark Collins said Atos will give the company access to innovation and help it improve customer satisfaction. “The process will simplify the operational approach across the full service and will improve the speed of response on business and IT issues,” he added.
Similar to the banking sector, insurance firms are being forced to revamp their IT systems to support the digital technologies their customers and staff use in their everyday lives. Keeping up with the rapid change in technology habits through in-house teams is difficult, which is leading to a focus on outsourcing.
The rise of the digital consumer, as well as the need for better data analytics, are important factors behind the increase in spending on IT and business process outsourcing by insurance firms.
A research report on outsourcing spending in the insurance sector from Everest Group, published in 2014, said: “As the modern consumer becomes more comfortable with digital marketing channels, insurers need to up their game to meet customer expectations.
“Insurers need help to understand the requirements and priorities of digital consumers and are looking to service providers to help them navigate through this channel.”
Another report 2014 from Accenture surveyed 6,000 consumers in 11 countries and revealed that almost a quarter of consumers would consider large internet companies, such as Google and Amazon, as possible insurance providers.
The research showed that 67% would consider buying insurance from companies other than insurers. Some 23% cited online service providers as options.