Jiffy Jane is a chatbot developed by Singapore’s NTUC and Zumata, a travel technology company which is one of the nine startups selected from NTUC’s InsurTech accelerator programme.
Specifically, Jiffy Jane is an unguided conversational travel insurance chatbot for mobile messaging applications including Facebook Messenger, which helps customers with queries and handles their travel insurance purchase.
It’s worth noting that Jiffy Jane is not the traditional chatbot that is based on a decision-tree architecture that asks questions in a pre-defined way or uses specific keywords. Jiffy Jane offers AI powered interactions, easy insurance purchase minus form filling, and accepts credit card payments.
- AI powered interactions – Jiffy Jane has been developed using advances made in Artificial Intelligence (AI) to interact with customers in a conversational style. This allows customers to use natural language and undefined requests (as opposed to trigger words) to chat with Jiffy Jane.
- Easy of use – No question sets to fill out. Jiffy Jane will only prompt for traveller’s relevant information such as destination, departure date and trip duration. Following which the traveller will be suggested with the travel insurance policy offers for group or family.
- Quick quotation – For the insurance price quote, the customer will be required to provide his/her key details like name, gender, nationality, identification card number and birth date.
- Payment – Payments can be made by credit card. Jiffy Jane will ask for the credit card details. Upon the insurance purchase, the traveller will be notified about his/her coverage details and a copy of the policy document will be emailed as well within two working days.
Since its soft launch in August, Jiffy Jane has hosted 1,100 chats via 780 unique users for a total of 30 completed transactions (representing a 4% conversion rate).
Peter Tay, NTUC Income’s COO has remarked that: “Jiffy Jane on Facebook Messenger complements consumers’ increasingly mobile-first lifestyle. Income sees the potential that Jiffy Jane has to disrupt the travel insurance industry in a positive way… [such that] the customers’ experience with insurance is made simpler, more accessible and most importantly, relevant to all.”
Ultimately, although chatbots are widely believed to be the future of distribution, the current generation of bots are still limited to simple product lines such as travel insurance. This effort by Singapore’s NTUC is another reminder that speech recognition, both voice and text, will be a key element of online distribution post 2020.