Transforming the traditional insurance model for MetLife in China

Building a responsive marketing, sales and service platform, the first of its kind for a major financial in China.

Beginning as a significant research and discovery project, we interviewed stakeholders in the region to uncover opportunities in a series of fragmented and disparate customer journeys across traditional sales (phone and face to face), online sales (via bancassurance partners), account management and administration.  We defined and redefined journeys across markets in India, China, Hong Kong, Japan and South Korea and tested opportunities with defined user groups.

The project then moved to China where we looked to deliver on the opportunities defined in the discovery phase through a responsive marketing, sales and service platform.

A responsive platform for marketing, sales & service

The responsive solution was targeted at the rising Chinese middle class and had to take into account a complicated (and unfamiliar) digital landscape, integrations with platforms such as Tao Bao and We Chat ensured the sales journey was relevant to a very unique user base.

Customer & purchase journey evaluation

To uncover opportunities across the sales journey we explored internal processes that had remained unchanged (and unchecked) since inception. We interviewed customers across the region ensuring our feature set and user experience aligned with their needs.

Stakeholder interviews

The first phase of the project began with stakeholder interviews covering business, sales and technical teams from MetLife subsidiaries in India, Hong Kong, Japan, China and South Korea.

The intention of the sessions was two fold:

  • Firstly, uncover issues and opportunities within the existing direct to consumer insurance journey – I approached this from the point of view of not just the sales journey but also the technical and business impacts on the overall journey – this highlighted a number of broken internal processes that were having a detrimental effect on the overall customer experience.
  • Secondly, to identify similarities between journeys in the individual markets – this was to assist with the overall aim of building a scalable marketing, sales and service platform that could be lifted from one market, tweaked and installed in another.
Workshop facilitation

In order to validate stakeholder findings with our own internal concept work I facilitated several workshop sessions in Hong Kong – bringing together regional stakeholders for the first time was challenging but led to some very valuable insights that helped drive the foundational phase of the project in China.

I used the sessions to not just validate our interview findings but also to assess (and further develop) our own internal thinking around improvements to the customer journey – these workshop sessions were the first time these stakeholders had ever seen their own customers journeys mapped out for discussion.

Feasibility assessment

After the initial discovery phase a feasibility assessment was carried out to determine the launch market for the new foundational marketing, sales and service platform.

Further stakeholder and local consumer interviews were carried out to refine the discovery concepts into something that would work well for the chosen market of China.

User research

Personas were defined for the China market and these were regularly assessed and adjusted as the journey analysis uncovered new potential customers for the foundational platform.

Experience design

I spent a great deal of time in Shanghai managing a team of UX designers, developers and business analysts as we created a responsive marketing, sales and service platform.

The project consisted of upwards of 100 individuals across India, China and Singapore – I was responsible for the delivery of wireframes, business requirements documents, functional specifications, prototypes and visual designs for metlife.com.cn.

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