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Insurer-Broker Technology Collaboration Beyond Transactions – New Canadian Research Study

Brokers and insurers collaborate in varying degrees to acquire, serve, and retain Canadian property & casualty customers. While the industry continues to improve broker-insurer transaction efficiencies, a potential new area of collaboration is the sharing of information and insights gained through customer analytics.

Based on a new SMA research study in Canada, “Analytics to Enhance Customer Communications,” both brokers and insurers understand the potential for gaining deeper insights on customers and leveraging information to increase sales, improve retention, and ultimately enhance profitability. However, the issues of proprietary data, customer privacy, and data accessibility present challenges to the sharing of customer insights.

Surveys and in-depth interviews of insurers and brokers confirmed that collaboration today is focused on the sharing of risk related data – information about the insured person or object that is required to quote, price, and service a policy. Over two-thirds of brokers and insurers stated that risk related information is the most valuable type of information to share with each other. The remainder sees relationship information and customer behavioral information as more important to share. Many believe these types of information will be increasingly important in the future.

Interviews revealed that forward thinking insurers and brokers view customer analytics as a key competitive differentiator over the next several years. A flurry of IT projects is underway, including single customer view, business intelligence systems, customer communications management (CCM) and even predictive analytics. Insurers are tackling the issues of data quality and accessibility as they create infrastructures to support broad based customer analytics. In addition, insurer-broker collaboration and information sharing is now moving beyond transaction data, starting in areas where strong partnerships already exist.

This research project was conducted by Strategy Meets Action (SMA) in partnership with Insurance Canada, and was sponsored by IBM Canada. The results of the research study will be presented at the Insurance-Canada.ca Technology Conference on Feb. 28, 2011 in Toronto.

This post provided by Mark Breading, Strategy Meets Action (SMA) SMA is a strategic advisory firm exclusively serving the insurance industry. SMA’s services are actionable, business-driven, and research-based – where strategy meets action – enabling insurers and IT solution providers to achieve business success. For more information, contact Mark Breading at mbreading@strategymeetsaction.com.

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