The evolution of technology in insurance automation has been pretty straightforward, up until the last few years. First we moved from manual processes to the earliest core systems–mostly mainframe systems that were not extremely configurable. Then we moved to more modern core systems, which were much more configurable, but still mostly managed on premise–to where we are today.
Organizations are now increasingly looking at how to move to the cloud and leveraging technologies like artificial intelligence, intelligent document processing, machine learning, and process mining across the policy and claims lifecycles to improve customer experience, increase efficiency, drive revenue, and reduce costs.
For P&C insurers especially, the lines of business written lent themselves to rip-and-replace projects, which were often lengthy and expensive but could truly modernize operations and show tangible ROI.
Now, however, the speed of change in technology, along with an evolving competitive landscape and customer expectations–combined with the new reality of a more permeant hybrid workforce–has challenged insurers to rethink technology and innovation. Long-term projects are transitioning to shorter, more targeted initiatives that will enable them to adapt and change over time.
And for leadership, making the decision to green light a project can be fraught, especially when their reputation, and career, can hinge on the success of a project. Because ultimately, deployment doesn’t equal success: it’s all about the bottom-line results.
Yet, as hard as it is for organizations to innovate, forward-thinking insurers are doing just that: transforming their core foundations to improve their business processes and deliver value in the ways that matter most–increasing productivity, improving efficiency, and ultimately driving better, faster decisions that positively impact their growth and revenue.
Great Automation Race to Insurance Innovation
IDC’s latest research about intelligent automation in insurance.
What separates successful insurance innovators from their competition?
True innovation is a complex, company-wide endeavor, one that requires a set of best practices that are, in a way, an operating system. It might not always be moving forward, but it is always strategic, somewhat creative, and helps to deliver innovation on an ongoing basis. Ultimately, the goal should be delivering innovation in the form of iterative change that evolves over time in the same way that business conditions and needs do.
One thing is for sure: innovation is difficult, even for well-established organizations, and there are constraints and barriers. Some are technology related, but many barriers are because of a legacy culture, and changing a group mindset, especially in a large company, requires more than a single conversation–and more than a mandate from leadership.
Whether an insurer is integrating new technology or implementing a new core system, they are having to rethink how their organizations operate with their teams and customers interacting in a hybrid business environment. Either way, it’s an opportunity for them to innovate with the goal of making their policy and claims processes more efficient and resilient, and the approach to evaluating them more data-driven.
In part two, I’ll explore some of the ways that insurers can approach innovation, taking into account that there’s more to consider than deciding on a new technology to deploy. Read it here: Insurance Modernization: Collaboration, Experimentation, and Innovating for Success