AS part of the technology wave that is sweeping across the insurance scene, Japanese insurer Tokio Marine Life Insurance Singapore (TMLS) has launched the industry's first self-learning chatbot for advisers selling its products.
This is part of the insurer's wider plans to engage its customers better through its digital and insurtech strategy.
Named TOMI, the chatbot is available round-the-clock through Facebook Messenger, can answer frequently asked questions and continuously expand its knowledge base by keeping track of questions that it is unable to answer, TMLS said on Tuesday.
Unlike average chatbots that rely on keywords, TOMI is powered by deep learning for natural language processing (Deep NLP), which allows it to answer questions quickly and accurately, regardless of how the questions are structured.
Cheong Wai Hon, chief information officer of TMLS, said the chatbot is meant to provide instant answers to operational enquiries and would enable frontline staff to focus on dealing with more complex queries.
"While TOMI currently focuses on enhancing internal efficiency and adviser engagement, plans are underway to expand its functions to allow for customer-facing interaction," he added.
The chatbot, co-created with homegrown startup Pand.ai, an incubatee at SGInnovate, will actively engage advisers by sending push notifications of relevant industry articles. It also allows advisers to take short quizzes, with incentives for those who answer all questions correctly.
Concurrently, the insurer also launched TM Wave, an in-house initiative that streamlines administrative processes for advisers. The app allows outstanding documents to be submitted as a photo via smartphones, shortening turnaround time.
Said James Tan, the insurer's chief executive officer: "TOMI and the TM Wave app set the tone for our technological transformation as we innovate and advance our digital capabilities by implementing new sales tools, customer service portals and data analy-tics."
TMLS is part of Tokio Marine Holdings Inc, which has more than 130 years of history. As at March 2016, Tokio Marine Holdings has a market capitalisation of close to US$25 billion and total assets of around US$194 billion. One of the largest insurance groups in the world, it has footprints in more than 483 cities in 38 countries.