Northwestern Mutual expands accelerated underwriting to disability

Northwestern Mutual has expanded its accelerated underwriting program to disability insurance applicants. Since July, more than 1,400 have been written using it.

Using advanced analytics and predictive modeling, Northwestern’s John Grogan, chief product and innovation officer shared, "Accelerated underwriting streamlines the application process and reduces the underwriting approval time while still maintaining our long-term product value. We can now provide this same seamless, digital purchase experience for a subset of disability insurance applicants."

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The accelerated program was released to life insurance applicants almost two years ago. When discussing what changes customers can expect, Grogan said, “The program is dramatically different for the way the model worked in the past. The previous process for life insurance applicants had to undergo medical procedures to move forward, including blood draws, urine samples and more depending on the insurance they were seeking, eliminating those steps allows the response time to change tremendously.”

Though a host of technology was used to improve the Northwestern’s underwriting, Grogan shared that an important one fundamentally transformed the historical paradigm for underwriting, reducing process time from 28 days to just one day. Eliminating the need for medical tests and records for approved cases, the accelerated program provides a medical history questionnaire to conveniently insert clients medical history.

Leading the team that helped the underwriting and predictive modeling for the program, Grogan states thats he is most excited about the magnitude of change for consumers and the capabilities that has been developed.

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