6 ways insurers can use technology to scale human empathy

How to strike the right balance between automation and person-to-person interaction

by Nusrat Atta, Industry Solutions Specialist, AT&T Business

Nearly every insurer is seeking to improve the customer experience (CX) that agents provide to policyholders. What’s the right balance between technology and the human touch?

As the popularity of robot automation, virtual assistants, and augmented reality has grown, so too has the pace and complexity of keeping up with customer expectations. Policyholders expect their insurance company tech to mirror, or at least support, the latest consumer devices and apps. The need to upgrade is persistent as new iterations and solutions become available. The need to balance tech and touch remains as well.

As the workforce transitions to a new mix of needed skills and physical interactions, more of the customer experience will likely be handled by AI, including chatbots. What will determine the optimal balance per company? According to a recent report by Accion, “Importantly, it’s not up to companies to decide when to enable, imitate, or replace human touch during the customer experience. Instead, companies must learn from their customers and determine when each is relevant for their customers.”

Central to the appeal of human interaction is empathy. Difficult to replicate with automated technology, empathy is often cited in the context of customer experience. A person dealing with a serious medical issue or a business owner that has just experienced a cyberattack likely wants to hear from a seasoned professional who can empathize with their situation and provide expert advice and next steps. Likewise, an under-pressure risk manager with thousands of employees and a diverse risk portfolio likely prefers the nuances of human connection more than the binary responses of AI efficiency. 

Relying too much on automation can undercut the trust and peace-of-mind benefits that fuel demand for insurance products in the first place.

  • Gain a deeper understanding of your customers and their current CX journey.
  • Identify the ideal use cases and customer journeys for each specific line of business and business area.
  • Evaluate technology that provides automated interaction, like chatbots, virtual assistants, and augmented reality.
  • Build awareness and expertise across your teams in AI, machine learning, and other automation technologies.
  • Discern what your customer engagement data is telling you about adding more tech or being more human.
  • Engage with a trusted advisor that can help you connect emerging tech to the customer experience.

To learn more about how you can achieve the right blend of technology and human touch, download the free e-book.


AT&T Business is a trusted advisor to insurance professionals and a leading provider of Edge-to-EdgeSM solutions for Financial Services Solutions. We are also working to deploy SD-WAN in more than 28,000 locations around the world, making us the largest SD-WAN provider globally. Achieve smarter, more trusted interactions with solutions that integrate our ecosystem of technology, expertise, and highly-secure global network to obtain near-real-time intelligence from virtually every corner of your enterprise