Post Issue Sampling – What’s it all about?

May 8, 2024

Post Issue Sampling – What’s it all about?

By Simon Jacobs, Director of Business Development, UnderwriteMe

It’s a job sitting within most Underwriting Departments but what is Post Issue Sampling? On the face of it the job can seem like a drain on valuable resource, however we aim to explain the important purpose it serves and how things can change moving forward.

Post Issue Sampling is a check carried out after a Protection policy has commenced.  For most insurers this means getting a medical report on a small random sample of recently started policies.

The vast majority of these medical reports accurately reflect the application form and reveal little or nothing of any significance for the underwriter.  The insurance remains in place and unaffected.  Only a small percentage of customers will see their cover, or the cost of it, affected following a post-issue check.

Identifying these small number of customers is hard work but it’s important.  The insurer can correct a decision and the customer is less likely to encounter a problem in the event of a claim.

Even with only a relatively small volume of cases, it is possible for insurers to understand whether problems are rooted in areas such as application question wording, the new business journey, product types, customer profiles or distribution.  These are valuable data-driven insights and, once identified, trends can be acted upon to reduce risk for the insurer and improve the overall customer experience.

Whilst more cases should lead to greater insights, Post Issue Sampling doesn’t need to be only carried out on a random sample.  A powerful option would be to take an increasingly targeted approach – using data to work smarter rather than harder.  Areas to target could include changes made to the underwriting approach, recent changes to questions, new distribution or specific customer segments.  Detailed understanding, and taking action, should allow insurers to improve their business mix and drive increasingly competitive pricing.

The key to making improvements though Post Issue Sampling for customers, insurers and advisers alike is the data sitting behind a reasonable sized, well targeted sample.

The biggest issue, currently, is that Post Issue Sampling is a labour-intensive process.  It’s costly in terms of underwriting and administrative resource and potentially distracting from the “day job” of onboarding new customers.  The good news is that this is where technology will help insurers – both in terms of filtering the customers to be sampled, and in reading and interpreting medical records.  Technology can take out huge manual elements of the process, highlighting only cases of interest and not swamping the Underwriting Department with simple, low-value tasks.

At UnderwriteMe we’re all about making the purchase and underwriting of insurance as simple and slick as possible.  If you’d like to know more about our Post Issue Sampling Tool and other products, please get in touch, we’re here to help!

Find out more about our Post Issue Sampling Tool here.