The New York-based company has steadily made gains in the insurance market since it was founded in 2012. When the coronavirus pandemic hit, Schlosser and team further tapped into their data-driven DNA. Oscar implemented an at-home risk-assessment survey that helped members navigate the COVID-19 testing environment. It also used claims data to develop risk-assessment results and develop targeted communications for members, including arming high-risk populations with actionable information like prescription refills; more than 85% of members switched to mail-order prescription refills.
How do you identify opportunities for innovation?
Simply, we identify opportunities for innovation by listening to our members and then develop solutions to meet their needs. Our technology and services give us a real-time line of sight into data on our members’ needs at any given moment, and we innovate around those insights to improve and deliver a better healthcare experience.
What advice do you have for people who know how to get an idea in front of managers but may be afraid of failing?
Fear of failure is a very real and legitimate concern for everyone, no matter your years of experience or title. But failure is the only way we learn and grow—and it’s the only way innovation happens. One of Oscar’s company values is to seek the truth, but never assume you’ve found it. There is always room for improvement, and that’s how I would recommend people see any critical feedback from a manager or potential “failure.” As innovators, it is our job to question everything and come up with solutions. If you stay focused on your drive for change and learn from every opportunity you make, you’ll succeed in the end.
How do you stay focused on innovation during a crisis?
We know what we’re doing is a big deal, and it’s more important now than ever. Our 1,400 employees are driven by our mission to deliver a better healthcare experience for our members at all times. They make everything we do possible, whether it’s building the tools that power our solutions, or the work of care guides helping members in real time. As an employer we also know that our employees are equally impacted by the unprecedented change and uncertainty our members are feeling right now—they are managing the same risks, children at home and more. We take a similar approach to how we serve our members in supporting our employees: communicating constantly and openly, equipping teams with digital tools and providing access to health resources like online counseling.