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One of the UK’s ‘Big 4’, Lloyds Banking Group is a conglomerate that operates 16 separate household brands across banking, insurance and investments. From in-branch visits to internet banking portals, they offer their services and customer access to holdings in many different forms for the sake of putting control in the customers hands.
As the world of banking is ever changing in this tech-centric modern day, and with ‘challenger’ banks beginning to operate with success which takes further market share away, Lloyds has an ambition and necessity to keep up with both technology and customer demand. Their focus being to allow customers to gain access in a secure and user-friendly way, to their daily banking needs, insurance concerns and investment plans.
For two of their major bank brands, Lloyds was keen to refresh one of their key insurance offerings for general customers. As a product, life insurance has long been a commodity within the banking sector that aims to secure any one customer’s future if the worst was to happen. Being a legacy style product, Lloyds wanted to take a different approach by appealing to a younger demographic, changing up the messaging that the product was marketed with, and review the interaction and engagement journey that any one customer would follow to purchase.
As a design partner coming into their insurance and protection labs, we were tasked with helping deliver direction, stakeholder buy-in and develop an efficient culture between the design and development teams. This included everything from establishing visual direction, creating a workable user journey based on user research input, to creating and sharing invaluable design assets with the development team.This particular piece of work happened at an awkward time for all businesses, early 2020, so this case study will be taking into account challenges that occurred as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and the pivot we had to make.
This project within the lab had been running for a period of time before hand, however they weren’t gaining the traction they wanted to, and the proposal of the product was still lacking in clarity. This was a key project that was being watched from the executive level as their market share and sales figures had remained lower than projections. It was a critical time for Lloyds to market their insurance products to key demographics.
The direction for this product journey was originally structured as an in-branch experience where a customer would schedule a meeting with a bank representative and be guided through the process on a secure tablet device.
In order to gain the appropriate direction for designing this journey, we had to conduct inquisitive research sessions within local bank branches and alongside bank representatives. We were taking into account the environment of the banks themselves, the interaction with the representative while utilising a tablet device to input personal data, the legal checks that would need to be made in the background of the process and potential success vs failure rates of a customer getting an automated insurance quote.
Operating in this way, we needed to design prototypes that could be utilised on the tablet devices and have potential users test the journeys and interactions of the digital product. Having completed this degree of discovery work, we were able to take into account a valuable amount of feedback from both bank representatives and prospective customers.
This lasted up until the pandemic hit. With our focus being in-branch visits where the product would be accessible on a secure branch device, we had to completely rethink the source of engagement and the medium the product could be accessed from. Taking into account the fact the UK had set mandatory rules for staying at home, businesses only operating when necessary and citizens only to leave home for essentials.
With this in mind, we insisted on staying mobile first, but this time the journey to purchasing the product would be conducted at home on the customers own mobile device. In terms of design we really just had to consider the absence of a bank representative to explain certain steps of the process, however when it came to legal and underwriting, we had limitations. We had to consider what could and couldn’t be shown on a customers’ device out-with a secure environment, as well as covering liability where customer understanding and acceptance was concerned. We had to be sure any customer had access to appropriate legal documentation and that we were able to effectively capture their confirmation at several steps along the way.We reviewed content and process with several banking functions such as legal and underwriting, all of which have regulatory needs and are generally difficult to gain buy-in from when the focus is innovation. However, having conducted the appropriate user research, design sprints, internal presentations and a fair few regulatory meetings, we were able to reach a point where all departments could agree on a way forward for the journey.
In regard to design direction, we had to simplify the journey whilst making each interaction point obvious and understandable. Ensuring that the legal confirmations were being actioned at the appropriate times, that the customers gained a valid quote whenever they chose to access the journey, and that the coverage of the insurance for any potential outcome was clear and concise.
With teams in alignment, appropriate design methods in play, and key stakeholders happy with the proposed product, we achieved a brand-new mobile-first product journey for both Halifax and Bank of Scotland. The product was immediately signed off for release and set live for customers to engage with and utilise as a new way to review real time insurance quotes, with little friction to purchase (depending on personal details and underwriting).
The lab team had a full catalogue of method, process and direction for establishing a new banking product. We were able to leave behind several key processes that will be adopted by the teams going forward for both team culture and presentation of project materials between the different teams.
The new product being released was improving conversions of new insurance customers, especially for those staying at home throughout the pandemic and had access to the simple journey on their mobile. We were delivering appropriate real-time quotes to all customers accessing the journey and ensuring they had access to all the legal documentation they needed, customised to their very own quote.
Even for when branches were due to open and take daily customers in again, having the product delivered on mobile allowed any and all customers to access the insurance products whenever they had time, without the worry of scheduling a meeting in branch or having time to make it to branch.
The customer journey for Lloyds banking group insurance products had just made major leaps thanks to the pivot we had to innovate into the original project deliverables.