Accelerating change in a traditional organization

The insurance sector as a whole is at a crossroads. Economic and global trends plus technological developments are shaking up the industry, and consumer expectations for a digital experience are higher than ever. By testing new ideas, Univé’s Innovation Lab adds to keep moving the business forward.

The Innovation Lab at Univé was charged with developing a new business proposition to offer customers a set of new preventative services. That is, to become the kind of insurance company that firstly focuses on preventing risk and limiting damage and secondary making sure the remaining damage is covered.

Let’s say one house fire caused by a chimney that hadn’t been cleaned causes €200,000 in damage that Univé would need to pay out. Or clogged gutters that lead to flooding or roof collapses and also cost tens of thousands to replace. If there were an application that provided regular services to prevent home disasters, public safety would certainly benefit. Not to mention, by reducing the number of claims filed, the business would save millions each year.
Unive

"The speed of building and how little money we spend on building the system is what really draws people in. Experiments take months, but building takes days."

But how?

In order to execute these ideas, there were some hurdles to jump first. Outsourcing to an outside partner or buying an existing ERP solution were also not options: it would simply take too much time and, as Innovation Manager Bas Wit points out, you never get exactly what you want the first time around — which is detrimental to the experimentation process. Bas and his team at Univé’s Innovation Lab needed to be able to develop solutions themselves fast and flexibly, and maintain them within their own team. If they could build prototypes at low cost to measure and validate customer behavior, they could put their ideas into action and challenge expectations of what insurance companies are capable of.

"If there were an application that provided regular services to prevent home disasters, public safety would certainly benefit. Not to mention, by reducing the number of claims filed, the business would save millions each year." - Bas Wit, Innovation Manager

This is what they built

What if there was a way to insure people better by helping them avoid disaster in the first place, rather than helping them fix things afterwards? The first idea Univé tested with Betty Blocks (and the help of implementation partner Ilionx) was Veilig Wonen (“Living Safely”), an application that provides customers with subscriptions for services like chimney inspections, alarm servicing, gutter cleaning, and other services that actually prevent bigger problems down the line.

Armed with a no-code platform, the Innovation Lab wasn’t just able to test intentions, as with normal mockups or prototypes: they could actually measure customer behavior by piloting a working application to validate that their members were willing to pay for these kinds of services. This allowed the Innovation Lab to demonstrate value and generate buy-in among stakeholders.

From a technical standpoint, how does an application like Veilig Wonen work? It’s actually a system of smaller applications and API integrations, all built with Betty Blocks. This reduces the need for separate systems and licenses for CRMs and payment management systems, for example.