Pacifica Insurance embraces technology to benefit its clients | Supplement


Many technological advances have played vital roles in benefitting human beings. Modernizing industries like manufacturing, agriculture, mining, transportation, construction, and communication have made our lives easier.

The insurance industry is no exception to this, with Pacifica Insurance Underwriters Inc. taking advantage of these technological advances for five decades to enable it to provide better services to its clients.

PIUI President and Chief Executive Officer Shirley Sablan said technology has always been synonymous with the future and businesses and industries need to adapt to this constantly evolving climate.

“Technology is as basic as it can get. Businesses must acclimate to the constantly evolving and tech-driven environment with processes that require consumers to transmit, correspond, and transact digitally,” she said.

Sablan went on to say that “technology has become the apparatus of change and has revolutionized the insurance industry globally.

“While some of us are slowly adjusting to these technological advancements, other more advanced parts of the world have already begun to fully utilize technology to streamline the process and improve customer experience,” she said.

Sablan points out that many processes have been automated, and marketing strategies have expanded exponentially to embrace the ease with which everyone communicates—via emails, social media, livestreams, podcasts, and similar online social platforms—to get the message across. She cited recent research that shows that roughly 97% of Americans now have access to a smartphone of some kind.

“There is no question that technology is our future,” she said.

The world is now connected through the internet with computers, smartphones, tablets and other gadgets being used in classrooms, homes, and offices, Sablan said, which is why Pacifica Insurance is also investing heavily in technology.

“We want to cater to the changing consumer habits and consumption. There are many moving parts to consider when making operational changes in an insurance agency, especially with the use of technology because we manage sensitive materials,” said Sablan.

“Such changes must also be compliant with regulations and can work seamlessly with the technology being used by our partners. For the most part, however, our company is already utilizing every form of basic technology available in the market.”

Sablan said Pacifica Insurance is also mindful that there is still a large number of their clients who prefer the traditional platforms of doing business with them, like face-to-face meetings, and she assures them of maintaining the customary services for their continued comfort.

An example is that Pacifica Insurance policyholders now have an option of receiving their documents, receipts, and other information through email, but they can still choose to get these by regular mail through the U.S. Postal Service.

Sablan remains cautious, though. She acknowledges that technology is a great tool, but there are still some aspects of these advances that need further study, like the nearly sudden rise of artificial intelligence, or AI, which may also expose businesses to financial risks that would warrant stronger protections.

“AI will be the norm in the coming years, but like everything else, (and I do not speak as an IT expert, but rather simply using common sense,) this new technology might still be in its [early] phase, so to speak. If used [correctly], AI could be a game-changer for businesses, especially in the service industry. However, because of the nature of insurance, AI must be used only if it will not compromise business operations,” said Sablan.

Still, there remains opportunities for the insurance industry as a whole to fully utilize available technology to streamline processes and make it easier for insurance companies, the insured, regulators, law enforcement officers, and employers, among others, Sablan said.

“However, there are technological infrastructures that need to be in place for this to happen, some of which are beyond our control as private companies,” she said.

That’s when the insurance industry comes together to find a common solution. “This is when we collaborate with our friends in the industry to address issues and concerns as a group.”


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