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Premium Balancing

Making rates more competitive



Team: Beam Benefits


Role: Product Designer

Timeframe: Three Months

Tools: User Research, Wireframes, Prototyping, Usability Testing, User Flows, UI Design, Wireframes, Prototyping, Usability Testing, Iterative Design, Style Guides

Premium balancing is a process in which the premium amounts are redistributed to be more favorable over our competitor rates. Using current competitor rates, beam’s rates, and enrollment numbers, Premium balancing performs a standard calculation that can be performed systematically if the user has the capability to enter the required data fields.

Beam’s underwriting team was performing this calculation manually, copying rates and pricing intelligence from our quoting tool into a spreadsheet, then copying the new rates back out on any request from sales. This process was unnecessarily burdensome to the underwriting team, and was the second biggest time sink, we thought we could systematize the process to be more efficient.


UW got about 10 requests to rebalance rates a day,  an average of 1,600 requests in 2023. Analytics expected we’d get twice as many requests in the coming months.

This work is expected to:


-Increase accuracy of Opportunity Amounts because users will be required to enter pricing intelligence in order to perform the calculation

-Improve efficiency gains by UW team - fewer requests to UW because MDE’s will be able to do this

-Capture more pricing intelligence information on each plan for data purposes



An interesting caveat to this design work is that I had worked on this pitch a year earlier, then it was deprioritized. As we moved toward more self service and the burden on UW increased critical mass, it was reprioritized. In the intervening year, our quoting tool, the platform from which the user accesses Premium Balancing, underwent a significant overhaul, and so, too, must the Premium Balance feature. Also of note is that Premium Balancing was initially called "Tier Rebalancing". 

Note here, my initial designs from a year prior, working within the framework of the old quoting tool. 

Original streamlined rebalancing (smaller).png

My subsequent designs essentially repurposed the old streamlined rebalancing feature, but within the new quoting tool. My intention was for this to be a jumping-off point with these, that simply repurposing the original flow would give me a good sense of where I wanted to take the designs. 

premium rebal v1.png

The old tier rebalancing looked very inconsistent with the new quoting tool, and it was apparent that I needed to update the UI to be a more cohesive experience.

Premium rebal v2.png

A very good point that came up in a design review is that the cards that feature the “rebalance” CTA shouldn’t be a catch all for bolt on functionality. This seemingly small change to the UI would eventually greatly change how I surfaced this feature, having it appear in the horizontal drawer where all the edit quote functionality lives. From here, the final design was taking form.

Premium rebal v4.png

At this point, I made fairly granular changes: note the more subtle yet effective CTA to the right of the rates, the shimmer loader, the smaller confirmation notification. At this point, I had progressed the designs as far as they could go without user feedback. 

premium rebal v5.png

Usability Testing

User tests were largely positive. Most of the feedback for the tier rebalancing feature were around the language.

​The Positive

  • BQT is intuitive. Both Tier Rebalancing and BQT Design prototypes received average SUS scores within the “excellent” range. Tier Rebalancing within a self-quoting tool was new to all interviewees, but they were able to successfully complete the process.

​What I Can Do Better

  • Include a definition of Tier Rebalancing: The UI for tier rebalancing was intuitive for interviewees, but the concept was not. Two interviewees  erroneously believed that Tier Rebalancing decreased the overall cost of the plan:

Usability Take Aways

These are a couple take aways from testing that I implemented into the final design:


Tier rebalancing proved no to be intuitive to our users, so I looked into more intuitive names.

Design system

Design system for tool tips/info bubbles need to be developed (high level)

Final Price Match (Formerly _Tier Rebalancing_).png
Usabiliy Testing


Here is a recording of the prototype in action.

Premium Rebalancing.gif


That the language was unclear around tier balancing was an interesting learning. I think there are 2 reasons for this.

  1. The obvious: user research and usability testing are invaluable to designing good experiences.  I’ll admit that I thought that this feature was self explanatory and that the value demonstrated itself. That is, however, not user centric thinking, and usability testing uncovered the flaws in the language. 

  2. I’ll also say that the value of copywriting in UX should not be underestimated.I think so often we as designers focus on the visual design, and relegate the copy to an afterthought. The fact of the matter is that copy should be given an equal seat at the table.


Premium Balancing has helped Beam increase its operational efficiency and keep up with its rapid growth. This experience also puts Beam’s tech forward ethos into practice transforming what was once a manual process into an automated one.

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