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Sara Assicurazioni: Loyalty Ensured Thanks to Electronic Signatures

18 February 2021

Success Stories: Experiences in the Digital Sphere told by Businesses Themselves

In this age of high technology and exponential growth, every company will be facing a watershed moment (if they have not already), where they begin to appreciate the socio-economic transformation that is currently underway, and the attendant evolution of their customer base, leading inevitably towards the digital sphere.
For many companies, March 2020 is the pinpoint for this epiphany. But other more forward-looking companies intuited the coming shift years earlier.

Sara Assicurazioni was among these. For 75 years, it has been a leader in the Italian insurance industry. Their seniority in the industry notwithstanding, Sara Assicurazioni was able to launch a widespread digital transformation that touched upon every aspect of its business, and took shape with remarkable speed.

The start of Sara Assicurazioni’s digital transformation in earnest, which saw the restructuring of its IT department in 2017, was followed by a major leap forward the following year: “That year ushered in the remodelling of all our business applications, and the full migration of all systems onto the cloud. Then, in 2019, we began to develop the first digital products. Thanks to synergies we enjoy with our partners, we were able to integrated our customer-relationships management software directly into these products”. Luigi Vassallo, Chief Operating Officer with Sara Assicurazioni. “Ours was, from the get-go, a strategic decision. We knew that making the move so quickly would be a stress-test for our operational infrastructure, but we understood that backing down from the challenge would mean falling behind in the market. This decision proved prescient for the pandemic because we were able to hit the ground running”.

Sara’s trajectory has shown no signs of slowing down, even during this difficult year, marked as it has been by the pandemic, which has proven a crucible for so many companies. With the support of a solid in-house change-management system, the insurance company turned to Intesa in September 2020 to design a self-onboarding / electronic-signature option for its customers, which was then launched in November 2020. “We are now in a fully technologically mature phase. Our customers are used to completing transactions on their mobile devices, using their phone cameras to identify themselves, whether to log on using a SPID or to open a bank account”, continues Mr Vassallo. “We are so pleased that people can become Sara Assicurazioni customers from the comfort of their own homes”.

Thanks to this new implementation, Sara Assicurazioni has repeatedly beat its competitors to the punch. In fact, it is one of the first insurance companies to provide a fully remote option for onboarding customers and signing documents, following the lead of the country’s major banks. “As insurers, we are now finally able to offer the types of services to which our customers, as account holders with the more modern banks, have become accustomed. The self-onboarding service supported by an online electronic-signature option is just the first step in bridging the major gap to what the financial industry has been offering for some time”.

Sara Assicurazioni’s self-onboarding option, featuring advanced electronic signatures (AES) and qualified electronic signatures (QES), allows new and prospective customers alike the opportunity to execute documents electronically, in compliance with all statutory document-retention requirements. Thanks to the signature portal’s integration and customisation, all documents are available to the customer: they can be sent to them via email, or accessed directly through their Home Insurance portal, through the Sara Assicurazioni customer section, available for viewing 24/7.

Rosa Pagano, Director of Sara Assicurazioni’s Legal Affairs Office, highlights how the implementation of the electronic signature has had a positive ripple effect, not only on customer experience, but also in terms of bolstering the legal compliance of company procedures in information management and retention, customer loyalty, not to mention the company’s reputation. “The AES option with self-ID, as designed with Intesa, offers multiple benefits for the customer: they can utilise a remote-signing and paperless option whilst maintaining proper legal and statutory compliance. Signature forgery is impossible, and document integrity and certification for use is ensured. We chose to offer a service that is both legally compliant, as well as reliable and secure”.

As evidence of Sara Assicurazioni’s rapid trajectory from 2017 to today comes the Docusign e-signature option offered through Intesa as part of a much more ambitious programme to digitalise customer experience. In the words of Amir El Saidi, Director of IT Business Factory: “The process of making signature capture a digital affair represents, without a doubt, an enormous advantage not just for the company, but for all stakeholders. Examples include payments made through SaraSuperPay (our remote payment option available to insurance agents) as well as promotions that can be activated directly through our app, SaraConMe [SaraWithMe]. The solution we designed with Intesa contributed to the digitalisation of the full customer-document acquisition chain, which allowed us to implement additional services, and to personalise our customers’ experience”.

For Sara Assicurazioni, this Success Story is just the beginning.

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