Penrod Blog

Member Expectations for Health Insurance Self-Service Portals in 2022

Today's competitive insurance landscape is defined by transparency, choice, and experience. Employer groups, TPAs, consumers, and even provider networks have higher expectations for the ways they interact with insurance companies.

It's clear that customer experience (CX) can be a differentiator, for better or for worse. Much as the insurance sector has traditionally been more product-focused than customer-centric, discrepancies have forced players in the industry to re-think this attitude.

A good place to start improving experience has been online-self portals tailored to improve service quality and increase brand loyalty. This comes in the backdrop of a finding that points to 88% of U.S consumers expecting organizations to have a self-service portal.

Before delving into what members expect for online self-portals in 2022, let’s take a look at how online member portals have traditionally worked.

A self-service portal is a customer-facing website that features a collection of self-help functions that the member can use to access when the need arises.

Online self-portals are the first-line for the member and should provide functions that make it a customer-facing version of the service desk.

Members expect the portal to deliver the insurer’s services in a more accessible and convenient way. It is on this platform that members can submit a claim, pay a policy or look at recent activities on their account. The benefit? Members no longer need to mail paper forms or experience on-hold times during a support call. For the insurer, this also means lower overhead costs, higher member satisfaction, and automated claims processing. This translates to faster, higher-quality service delivery.

Going into 2022, your members will expect even more. Here are some things to expect.

Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Natural Language Understanding (NLU), AI-infused Chatbots

Including a chatbot with questions on your self–portal is the first step into offering a conversational experience to members. As a member-facing bot, these come in handy by helping customers with any follow-up questions they might have. These chatbots can also help with escalating responses. Specifically, in the event of a customer query that is too complex to be automated, personal, or sensitive, the chatbot connects the member with a human agent that can assist.

For the insurer, these chatbots will lower costs by automating support for the most basic, frequently asked questions.

Expand From Just An Omnichannel Experience

Nothing is as off-putting for members than having a great experience on one channel only to experience difficulty when trying to access the same information via a different method.

From 2022 onwards, consumers expect that your self-portal is compatible on every device they use, including mobile and desktop. Great experiences, and positive brand equity, requires that the different channels offer a cohesive experience.

Address Pain Points

Suppose one of your members has multiple policies. Are they able to access all of these on the same portal? Are they able to easily access different billing information, check on cover inclusions, or track deductibles for everyone in their family?

As an insurance provider, you need to be able to forecast some of these pain points and address them. This could be as simple as providing tools that assist with quoting and calculations. Also, consider including a deductible tracker that helps members keep tabs on just how much they have paid.

Provide a means through which they can learn about which plan is best for them. Consider having a side-by-side slide showing the different plans, which could also feature prompts that make it possible to upsell the member.

Finally, members expect that they obtain a membership card after some period of engagement with your business. This card should come with benefits that members can redeem.


Members will expect personalized experiences, not only as they consider your plans but also as they engage throughout the plan year. The best way to achieve personalization is to include a cognitive search engine powered by AI and Machine Learning. These tools help analyze visitor’s preferences, behaviors, past searches, and sentiments.

With this algorithm, and with the power of a platform like Salesforce Experience Cloud, relevant information can be customized for each member. This is especially important as Generation Z enters the workforce – younger users expect personalization, and will often leave the portal if they feel their needs aren’t being predicted.

A Checklist for Online Self-Portals in 2022

As you design the online self-portal for members of your insurance, there are design checklist items that you should keep in mind. These include:


Searchability throughout your platform should be driven by context, structure, and environmental UI/UX statements that inform the user.


Whatever features you include, you want the portal to be self-serviceable and available quickly. This means that your portal must contain 100% of the services a member would have otherwise accessed through traditional support channels.


Throughout the portal, navigation needs to be intuitive and aligned with the user. Overall, you want to maintain a smooth transition in the way users browse and interact with your portal.

Final Word

It’s clear. In 2022, members will expect self-service portals. As transparency, choice, and innovation work their way into healthcare, member experience can be your greatest asset – or your greatest liability.

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