As insurance companies find themselves adjusting to new standards for customer experience in the digital age, life insurers specifically are looking to make the application process a little easier for qualified clients. Lincoln Financial Group has been exploring the use of third-party data sources and telephone applications for a while in its higher-income customer segments, and announced today that those capabilities are coming to the middle market as well.

The insurer has launched LincXpress, a series of streamlined processes designed to make life insurance underwriting and new business transactions easier and more efficient for advisors and their clients; as well as Lincoln TermAccel, a product using a fully electronic transaction process as well as streamlined underwriting opportunities that enable policies to be issued in less time than traditionally.

“LincXpress takes products we’ve always offered and moves the administration burden to Lincoln” rather than the producer or client, says Heather Milligan, SVP of underwriting and new business.

Underpinning this shift is a telephone-based application process that, in real time, takes answers given to a Lincoln representative over the phone to determine whether a prospect can be underwritten automatically, without the need for certain lab tests.

“By the end of the call, the system is running all the checks, and the rules engine is evaluating to see if it can make a digital decision,” Milligan explains.

While the tele-app is available to buyers of any Lincoln product through LincXPress, TermAccel is a product designed from the ground up to be digital from start to finish. The term policy is meant for first-time life insurance buyers who are getting into the market for the first time.

“Thirty-three percent of Generation X feels they don’t have enough life insurance,” says Andrew Bucklee, SVP and head of insurance solutions distribution. “We recognize there’s an opportunity to reach younger consumers in the insurance buying marketplace.”

Agents are still involved in these digital processes, however. They serve a role in identifying the right products for a particular client and kick-starting the digital processes.

"You have make it so easy for the agent to distribute this product and provide advice and value without burdening them with a lot of administrative overhead," says Milligan. "Many people still benefit from that advice."

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