More than one third of insurance companies from Europe have neither strategy, budget nor belief for mobile. Some do, however, begin to employ a strategic approach towards customer- and employee-centric mobile apps. These are some of the key results of a survey by Comarch, a global software house with expertise in finance, conducted among top 70 European insurers.

Joining forces with Efma, a non-profit body promoting innovation in the world of finance, Comarch set out to examine how - and to what extent - insurers are currently using, and plan to use, mobile technologies.

‘Today, more and more banks announce their mobile-first strategy, but insurance companies have so far hardly gone the same path. And for most of those who did, the path was rather thorny’, points outMariusz Janczewski, Senior Insurance Consultant at Comarch. ‘So, why and how does insurance lag behind other industries here? That’s what we wanted to find out initiating our research’, adds Mr. Janczewski.

According to Comarch’s report titled "Insurance in the mobile-first era", which describes and analyzes the key findings of that research, mobile apps are offered by 43% of insurers Europe-wide. Another 20% are developing such apps at the moment.

The apps are mainly focused on helping the insured and come with basic information on insurance products, up to core customer-focused operations like quoting, policy-issuing and claim-making. The most often provided features are getting an emergency assistance (38%) and filing a claim (33%).

‘On the other hand, we have apps for adjusters, focused mostly on customer and policy information as well as claims and document management, and agents – coming with product information and customer details’, says Mariusz Janczewski of Comarch.

On-demand and short-term insurance products, based on customer habits and behavior, not the traditional underwriting rulebook – such as travel insurance – are considered most prospective for the mobile channel by 67% of those surveyed.

Also, 33% of respondents regard small medium enterprise insurance offered in the mobile channel as “essential” for their businesses. “We believe SME insurance will eventually take the mobile world by storm as entrepreneurs need flexible on-demand service anytime, everywhere”, reads the report.

Another 30% of insurers, in turn, are concerned about a clash between traditional and digital channels. Security concerns (14%) or legacy systems limitations (14%) are partly where the lack of strategy and belief for mobile come from.

A full copy of the report including more detailed findings is available for download here -