Article | July 13, 2022
There is no doubt that we are living in an era in which insurers have been called to transform their business offerings, infrastructure and operations. Successful transformation translates into new revenue opportunities, stronger customer relationships and sustained brand relevance. However, this need to evolve cannot be addressed through superficial changes. Leading insurers are transforming their core offerings to completely reimagine their role in the insurance landscape. As the nominations and winners for the Efma-Accenture Innovation in Insurance Core Insurance Transformation award show, leading insurers are starting their core transformation at the top, and applying it to every touchpoint of the business.
Nine pioneering nominees
The nine nominees in the core insurance transformation category lead core insurance transformation in various innovations across their value chain. The nominations were:
AXA for A.Iconic Claims
Discovery for AI Quote
RBC for their conversational AI Platform, driven by Personal Insights for Life Insurance Application
Generali for their fund transaction through blockchain innovation
FWD for the AI-Everywhere Smart Insurance Framework
China Life Insurance for an intelligent value evaluation system for salesforce
Multiasistencia for MACARENA, an innovative AI voicebot that provides100% automated First Notice of Loss in home insurance claims
Humania for their ground-breaking income insurance for accident and disability claims
Mapfre for Verbatims, a cognitive behavioural model that integrates live customer feedback
As can be seen, by the nominees above, AI is a leading technology in core insurance transformation. In fact, every innovation used technology in fresh, structured ways to create a lasting impact on their business. Let’s look closer at the winners, and what their innovations say about how to lead core insurance transformation in 2021.
Discovery are transforming the way brokers and clients engage with them through the introduction of their AI Quote service. Users are able to upload a PDF or pictures of competitor insurance and investment documents via phone or computer, and receive an equivalent Discovery quote in seconds. The entire journey can be completed in under a minute. Brokers can take the quotes to their clients and where a client has completed the direct journey, they will be called by a sales agent to discuss the specifics of the quote and close the sale.
Romek Sadowski, Discovery Life’s Head of Technical Marketing says, “Ultimately, AI-powered optical character recognition (OCR) technology has been able to equip us with a seamless journey for clients, advisers and employees of the business as a whole. For clients, benefits include receiving a comparable quote in less than a minute and an improved understanding of Discovery’s products relative to the market. For advisers, key benefits include more accurate and consistent competitor comparisons, as well as a reduction in sales and quoting frictions. By automating the process of extracting data from policy documents and then converting it into comparable Discovery Life benefits, our advisers are able to spend less time on manual work and more time assisting our clients.
AI Quote has also created opportunities for Discovery Life to incorporate digital tools into many of our existing processes and create a single, seamless, digital journey for advisers and clients alike. Additional innovations, such as Virtual Underwriting which allows clients to undergo underwriting from anywhere they choose, have been developed and are being refined in order to make this goal for a seamless digital journey a reality.”
This is an important innovation in the South African insurance and investment landscape, which is highly developed and innovative, and characterised by frequent product updates and enhancements. While products are fine-tuned to meet customer needs, it’s difficult for brokers to keep track of various products in the market and how they compare from one competitor to another. Clients are also not in the position to understand how exactly their financial products compare against competitors.
“The South African insurance industry is a complex environment with a vast array of sophisticated products. Financial advisers are faced with numerous competitors each with multiple products and options, resulting in countless different quoting combinations. By automating the comparison process, AI Quote simplifies the new business experience for both advisers and clients, increasing conversion rates and improving stakeholder satisfaction. AI Quote ensures that clients who have existing policies with our competitors are quoted comparable Discovery benefits and gives advisers confidence that they are providing clients with the best possible advice when comparing policies.”
By removing sales frictions and automatically carrying out comparisons, Discovery’s AI Quote aims to enhance the company’s exposure to potential clients, attract brokers to sell Discovery products, improve the accuracy of replacements and promote Discovery’s brand as a market-leading innovator. With an efficient client- and broker-centric platform, Discovery has taken quoting to the next level.
The potential for AI, however, is just beginning to be untapped. Romek concludes, “The insurance landscape is evolving, and we have seen an influx in microinsurance providers, direct-to-customer insurers and niche players in the market. When it comes to life insurance, clients are faced with a dauntingly large number of options – and that number is increasing. Within such complexity, manual processing of data in order to generate benefit comparisons is simply inefficient. A key benefit of AI is that it can complement or replace manual processes and allows for a far more streamlined user experience.
Outside of the new business process, AI has displayed immense success in other areas such as customer service, underwriting and claims. Chatbots are now commonly used by insurers around the world to assist clients and answer their questions. Car insurance has been fundamentally changed through advancements in telematics. Big data is more readily available and, with the help of AI, can be utilised to make faster and more accurate pricing and underwriting decisions.”
Generali conducted a deep transformation in the way they transact with their counterparts and custodians through the use of blockchain technology.
Generali France currently processes 250 thousand orders on funds (to cover unit-linked policies) per year through classical schemes via custodians. The aim is to generate a direct link with asset managers for trading shares of funds without using the costly transfer agent of custodians.
With this transformation in mind, Generali France invested in a startup called Iznes, developing a trading platform on funds based on blockchain technology. With this as a foundation, Generali has begun to connect its IT and operations to the innovative platform.
The innovation can serve all middle and back offices of investment departments and asset management companies. It crunches transaction costs and creates a direct link between the buy-side and the sell-side. The total cost of Generali Unit-linked orders is expected to drop by half, supposing that 50% of counterparts join the platform.
Led by their customers’ needs and vision to change the way people feel about insurance, FWD Group Data developed a ‘Smart Insurance Framework’ which sees the business embarking on a ‘AI-everywhere’ approach. The platform has transformed the entire insurance journey for both their customers and employees with the use of advanced technologies and AI power.
To create a simpler and smoother insurance experience for customers, FWD created a modern data architecture framework that improves operation efficiency internally and convenience externally. The Group Office Data Platform (GODP) streamlines and integrates all data into a single platform that is smart, secured and scalable. This platform allows business users to harness data, insights and run analytics across all our markets, to help support a spectrum of initiatives in FWD with data. The clever use of data allows FWD to evolve and predict customer responses more accurately, develop a better understanding of customer needs and behaviour, and in turn serve them better.
As the nominees and winners show, the insurance industry is embracing technology to pre-empt, analyze and streamline customer, broker and employee experiences. We would love to hear how you are transforming your core insurance operations. Submit your core insurance innovation to the Efma-Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards for 2022.
Article | July 15, 2022
With the major impact of the COVID-19 outbreak, contractors appreciate the need for insurance coverage even more. You may be safely covered by Force Majeure and pandemic clauses in your policies. However, you may still be wondering how to deal with the associated costs related to the COVID-19 outbreak risks. In this article, let’s look at some of the steps you can take to handle your insurance position during the pandemic.
Automobile Insurance, Insurance Technology
Article | December 19, 2022
Despite economic pressures on reinsurers and cedants, nearly all buyers were able to secure coverage during the reinsurance renewal period. However, attachment levels and the cost of ceding risk were higher than most buyers desired, and supply constraints in some lines and territories caused stress not seen in years. As a result, according to Gallagher Re's latest 1st View renewals report, the reinsurance market has maintained its firming trend.
Despite mostly positive H1 2022 results, the combination of inflation and rising interest rates has caused reinsurers to adjust their balance sheets and reserves while also taking into account how a recessionary environment may increase claims frequency.
These economic factors, combined with sustained loss levels, allowed reinsurers to maintain upward pricing pressure as they sought to reduce their appetite for volatility.
Key Contributions to Understanding:
Natural disaster capacity decreased overall as reinsurers continued to shift away from low-level layers, which differed by country and region.
Reinsurers were seen assessing cedants' inflation-related actions and applying carefully calculated loadings to relevant treaties.
The Russian invasion of Ukraine increased interest in cyber and war contract provisions.
Long-tail casualty placements remained popular among reinsurers, but there was more debate about ceding commissions than in recent renewals.
Higher ILS risk transfer prices have attracted net new capital, but this has not resulted in market softening.
The inflation discussions have been detailed and technical, with reinsurers eager to challenge cedants' model outputs. Most reinsurers are assessing reserve adequacy as interest rates rise, in addition to their concerns about primary rate adequacy in the new inflationary environment.
They are experiencing effects simultaneously on the asset and liability sides, which has strengthened their resolve to maintain the pricing momentum of the previous two years.
Article | May 31, 2022
Through machine learning and deep learning, artificial intelligence (AI) can meet industry expectations.
As artificial intelligence becomes more deeply embedded in the insurance industry, industry leaders must position themselves to respond to the changing business landscape. Every day,various factors contribute to the industry's changing landscape. AI is becoming more assertive in insurance, particularly in cost savings, customer service and experience, product innovations, and marketing initiatives.
With this understanding, market leaders can develop appropriate revenue-generating strategies, embrace new AI horizons and implement them to develop the perspective required to succeed in the futuristic insurance industry.
AI-related Action for Better Forecasting
Among insurance executives who have already invested in AI, many new businesses are reaping significant benefits. They have gained the advantages of using AI to improve the customer experience (CX). According to a Deloitte study, approximately 65% believe AI assists in decision-making. Furthermore, according to PwC specialists working with insurers on AI initiatives, businesses are increasingly using AI to:
Customize products and services for consumers and other businesses
Establish a loyalty framework and upsell among customers
Automate more data from social media and other sources for better forecasting
Automate more aspects of claim processing
Improve fraud detection methods
Beginwith customer segmentation to target
As a result of these findings, AI investments will benefit insurance companies more than ever before.
How Insurers Can Accelerate AI
The following points can help insurance businesses accelerate AI and achieve faster ROI.
Centralize Business Functionalities
Deploying AI into the process aids in the automation of resources, the alignment of tasks, the use of analytics to nurture data, the improvement of governance, and the scaling of solutions.
Focus On Data
AI in insurance aids in collectingand combining relevant data from consumers and future customers. AI-assisted data collection is faster and more accurate at the appropriate time. In this manner, marketers can plan for future marketing campaigns that will increase engagement and bring in more money.
AI is the most effective at reducing business risks. Also, AI works best for insurers to minimize risks such as data breaches, fraud detection, correct cost segmentation, and budgeting hazards.
Some Insights into AI Investment: A Key Decision to Make!
As technology continues to empower the insurance sector, let's take a look at how other insurance companies are investing in AI so that you may make the vital decision to incorporate AI into your organization as soon as possible.
65% of businesses found better ways to establisha customer experience base with the help of AI post-2020
49% of businesses have improved their internal decision-making process after adopting AI
56% of businesses were able to reinvent their products and services through AI
47% of businesses operated their business functions more efficiently with AI and increased productivity.
45% of insurance businesses saved substantial costs using AI algorithms
35% ofinsurance businesses have successfully reduced risks associated with their businesses after the deployment of AI.
53% of insurance companies have seen a significant revenue increase by incorporating AI into their processes.
These figures are based on a Deloitte’s research study conducted by insurance industry specialists worldwide.
Some Possible AI Risks for Businesses
Every technology helps businesses gain benefits, but technology installation has to be done correctly to avoid consequences. As a result, insurance companies must exercise caution when implementing AI in their business processes. The possibility of faulty AI implementation could lead to:
New cyber hazards
New privacy threats
New legal liabilities and reputational risks
More complex business modules
The lack of AI abilitiesismore challenging, which can affect the entire business sphere, especially the functions that are associated with AI.