Artificial Intelligence Gains Traction Among Insurers

Autonomous, vehicles will increase auto glass and visibility services as well as the length in vehicle ownership, says Frank Terlep, CEO of Autotechcelerators. Terlep spoke during a webinar entitled Industry Disruptions: What They Are & How They Will Disrupt the Industry, which was hosted by the Collision Industry Electronic Commerce Association (CIECA) today. The webinar also took a close look at the long-term implications of artificial intelligence (AI) and electric vehicles and how both will impact the auto insurance and auto glass repair and replacement businesses.

“The most important question to ask yourself is are you going to be a disruptor or are you going to be a disruption,” said Terlep, as he discussed how COVID and other factors have impacted the industry.

“Electrification and electric vehicles (EVs) are one of the items we see quickly impacting the industry,” said Terlep. He went on to explain that electronic-based, or autonomous, vehicles will increase auto glass and visibility services as well as the length in vehicle ownership. According to Terlep, calibrations will also be required in the event of an accident and the repair and diagnostic processes will also be impacted. However, he expects dealer services to decline by as much as 35% due to autonomous vehicles.

“In the future cars will become big computers on wheels and things like over the air updates will be normal, just take a look at what Tesla has been doing. Other vehicle manufacturers are trying to catch up, and soon all newer vehicles will have that ability,” said Terlep.

He also noted how EVs will change the steps in the first notice of loss. Traditionally there are several steps a customer takes after they have been in an accident that involve contacting their insurer, finding a repair shop, scheduling an appointment and getting an estimate. But according to Terlep, most of those steps will be eliminated as the vehicle will already be able to produce the data needed to calculate an estimate, and can contact or locate local repair shops and may even be able to schedule the appointment.

“EVs are becoming a bigger draw for the industry and you can see more and more auto manufacturers create their own operating systems, this is just the beginning,” Terlep said.

Insurance Impact

According to Terlep, COVID-19 fast-tracked certain aspects of the auto insurance industry. “As we sit here today many of us are still working from home, this virus has changed the way people do work in the industry and how insurance companies are collecting data,” Terlep said.

He mentioned several auto insurance companies have utilized things that include: virtual chatbots for quicker customer assistance, touchless claims processing, photo-based estimating tools, video based claims inspections, e-signatures and digital payment options.

Terlep said many insurers are using predictive analytics to not only collect data, but to also understand and forecast customer’s behavior. Predictive analytics can also assess the risk of fraudulent auto glass claims.

“I think you’re going to see a lot more AI incorporated in auto insurance platforms going forward. Especially because AI can help individualize insurance solutions based on each accident,” Terlep said.

The association also played several short videos, one of which mentioned how drones can be used in accordance with AI to better assist in the claims process. According to the association’s video, drones can be used in risk assessment and calculation by being able to survey areas that are difficult for humans to reach.

“The use of drones can save insurers a lot of money associated with assessing the risk factors of a business,” a portion of the video says.

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