- Where Insurance & Technology Meet

How to Improve Success in Business Transformation

With all of the disruptive factors at play, ‘business transformation’ has become a strategically significant topic. This is healthy, demonstrating that senior leaders are aware of existential challenges.

Commentators suggest that while there is a general understanding of the requirements and processes involved in business transformation, several factors are causing a relatively low rate of success, including:

  1. underestimating the complexities of execution, and
  2. the need for clear focus on customer demand and engagement.

We’d be interested in your thoughts here.  To expand the conversation, a number of sessions at the  2015 Technology Conference (#ICTC2015) will focus on business transformation in the insurance community.

Complexities corralled by disciplined methodologies

According to Robert T. Vanderwerf, Transformation Strategy Leader at KPMG, transformation drivers for organizations  include globalization, economics, technology shifts, and regulation.  “When four or five significant drivers are changing at the same time, the business environment becomes highly complex,” Vanderwerf said in a 2014 Forbes article on steps for successful business transformation.

In the transformation environment, managing complexities requires a disciplined approach, with clear objectives.  As an example of success, A.T. Kearney provided a case study of a European bank which undertook a multi-year transformation of its operating model.  It used Lean methods  to address gaps between current a desired states.  The results at mid-project were impressive, with processing times for mortgages decreasing 33% .

In a similar fashion, Industrial Alliance Automobile and Home (IAAH) working with EIS Group, used Lean methodology in the implementation of new core systems – policy, claims, and billing.  The result was a complete refresh of technology, including conversion, in two years.

This case study will be presented at #ICTC2015 by Pascal Lavoie, CIO IAAH and Phillipe Lafraniere, SVP EIS Group.  In addition, IAAH is a finalist in the 2015 Technology Awards, which will be presented at #ICTC2015

Business transformation and customer engagement

The Forbes article notes that “Business transformation needs to be aligned with customers’ needs—in fact, it needs to anticipate them.”  However, an accompanying piece, How to Decode Customer Demand,  points out that customer demand is not a singularity: “a major trigger such as customer demand may have a different underlying reason, depending on the industry, company or geography.”

The insurance industry faces unprecedented challenges in meeting consumer demands  In addition to traditional channel issues – broker, agent, or direct distribution – consumers now cross multiple touch points – traditional and digital.

Kimberly Harris-Ferrante, Vice President and Distinguished Analyst, Gartner, will be articulating these challenges at #ICTC2015 during her keynote, The Digital Conundrum: Digital is Binary, Consumers are a Continuum which will be based on an extensive survey of insurance consumers.

In addition, there are over 20 session focusing on technologies and business practices required to provide a rich, integrated, consistent customer experience.

What do you think?

Given the challenges that insurers and distributors are facing from new competitors and evolving demands in the existing insurance market, business transformation may be one of the most important issues confronting insurance executives.

I look forward to comments you have.  In addition, I look forward to welcoming you to #ICTC2015, March 9-10, 2015 at the Metro Toronto Convention centre. Details and registration  informationare available here.