New research by Solera Holdings reveals increasing demand for automated claims, with trust in AI-driven processes and repairs rating 79 per cent globally. The annual survey also identified rapid acceleration of AI adoption among global car insurers, enterprise body shops, and OEM dealer networks to deliver on consumer expectations. However, “critical adoption barriers” such as cost and workforce upskilling remain challenging.
Solera said ‘digital-first’ channels are revolutionising the way car owners manage claims and repairs. Half (49 per cent) of consumers desire fully digital self-serve experiences while 43 per cent prefer a hybrid model, blending digital tools with human contact. As a result, more consumers (70 per cent) are willing to change their insurance provider to one that offers digital claims technology. Additionally, nearly two thirds (65 per cent) would choose a repairer using AI to minimise the risk of error when conducting work on their vehicle.
Bill Brower, Vice President, Industry Relations at Solera, said digitisation is now an integral and expected part of the claims cycle. “Our research shows the pace at which consumers now actively seek automated self-serve models that meet their needs for digital convenience, speed, and accuracy. It’s clear that those implementing cutting-edge technologies like AI will gain critical customer retention, efficiency, and resilience,” Brower said.
According to Solera, digital transformation projects have been fast tracked to optimise processes and solve challenges accelerated by the global pandemic. In the last year, repair shops and OEMs had the highest return on projects through improved profitability (52 per cent), increased staff productivity (50 per cent), and employee efficiency (49 per cent). Insurers had the highest return on digital transformation projects through improved business resilience (58 per cent), faster decision-making (55 per cent), and increased staff productivity (55 per cent).
The use of digital claims technology has also increased rapidly. Solera’s survey revealed over a third of claimants have completed a claim without speaking to a person, while more than half have taken images of their vehicle and uploaded them to an insurer’s platform.
Despite the progression of AI-driven claims and repairs, Solera said the ‘ecosystem’ still faces critical adoption barriers. Global car insurers cited cost-to-implement and workforce upskilling (73 per cent and 65 per cent respectively) as their biggest AI challenges. Repair shops and OEMs face similar drawbacks, with cost the largest barrier to AI (75 per cent).
However, nearly two thirds (64 per cent) of global car insurers and 43 per cent of repair shops and OEMs are highly confident their AI goals will be met within the next 12 months.
“COVID was clearly the tipping point for customer adoption of digital services,” Brower said. “Insurance customers are clearly ready for digital options, especially when they have the opportunity to quickly access an adjuster in person as needed.”
According to Brower, optimism among industry decision makers to achieve AI objectives is a huge vote of confidence, but more needs to be done to realise value for stakeholders and customers.
“There are inevitable barriers in the journey towards full automation, but the message is clear. Now, more than ever, organisations must leverage first-class technology partnerships to streamline this transition and maximise the return on AI investments,” Brower said.