Insurance Product and Service


Profitable growth through a product and service catalog

Strategies for group insurers in uncertain markets

From an ever-growing demand for products and services to ongoing tech transformations to the evolution of partnerships—macro trends have been taking the world of group insurance by storm. How can insurers separate themselves and their market offerings from the competition? Enter the product and service catalog.

Why implement a product and service catalog?

Recent macro trends have been compounded by organizational aspirations to accommodate customers and partners by offering the broadest possible product and service portfolios—further amplified by underwriting coveted cases involving marquee employer logos or brokers with significant influence. During the sales cycle for such cases, insurers often try to match products and services offered by the incumbent competitor—adapting their operations and technology in pursuit of the business while threatening performance and financial results.

Achieving profitable growth that satisfies the market and aligns with the insurer’s value proposition, operations, and technology capabilities often depends on a disciplined approach to product and service offering decisions. Developing a well-defined and actively governed product and service catalog can promote sales discipline, help insurers navigate evolving product needs, and establish a competitive position in an increasingly complex market. It may also serve as a reference guide for insurers in evaluating investments, determining partnerships, and building integrations across ecosystems.

Building a group insurance product and service catalog to drive profitable growth

Product and service catalog: From features to functions

At its core, a product and service catalog should include features that provide benefits and capabilities (e.g., life face amount, disability benefit period, portal customizations, and real-time integrations) with descriptions of tiered variations in offerings. The tiers potentially provide a structured separation of feature functionality based on complexity, level of customizations, and support levels (e.g., custom versus standard file feeds, weekday versus 24/7 support). Insurers should be strategic in mapping these tiers to consumer segments, accounting for requirement variations across demographics. While market dynamics will likely influence an insurer’s catalog, strategic goals, differentiating capabilities, and operations and technology should also be considered during development.

Figure 1. Illustrative product and service catalog

Designing and building a product and service catalog

The process of designing and operationalizing should be done in a structured order to help ensure that the products, services, and associated feature tiers are well received within the organization and can create market differentiation in alignment with the broader organizational strategy. Before defining the catalog, the insurer should consider how it will align with its business strategy. A clear set of short- and long-term goals should be articulated for the catalog that serves as guardrails and helps the core team make appropriate decisions while designing it.

Benefitting from product and service catalog implementation

The central benefit of deploying a catalog is improved alignment across disparate stakeholders. When implemented well, it can potentially:

  • Align sales and operations functions to sell what can be profitably delivered.
  • Create clarity regarding the prioritization of investments to close operational gaps.
  • Establish a framework for evaluating product and service offering extensions to satisfy the demands of high-value customers and partners.

By increasing alignment and reducing conflict in these ways, insurers can put themselves on a path to selling more business and enabling profitable growth.

Looking ahead

In the face of many challenges and evolving expectations, insurers must diligently curate profitable products and services. By implementing a product and service catalog, insurers can channel their organizational energies into building market-valued capabilities rather than competing reactively in an unprofitable arms race. For some deliberate insurers, a product and service catalog will preserve leading practices already in place across the organization to improve the likelihood of continued prosperity. For others that suffer more acutely from the whiplash of ever-changing product and service requests, a well-executed product and service catalog implementation may help avoid providing products and services that are not fiscally prudent. In both cases, building a product and service catalog will likely be essential for going to market more efficiently and profitably.

Get in touch

Managing Director

Group, Voluntary,

and Worksite Practice Lead

Deloitte Consulting LLP


Insurance Strategy

Deloitte Consulting LLP


Insurance Strategy & Technology

Deloitte Consulting LLP

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