- Where Insurance & Technology Meet

The Transformation Manifesto

Tomorrow, I will be joined by 500 + of my closest friends to hear what practitioners, analysts, and suppliers suggest will be the impact of technology on the insurance business.  I can’t predict exactly what these experts will be saying at the ICTC2016, but having gone through the background material, there seems to be an overarching theme.

If we did a word count …

… ‘Transformation’, would come out in the top tier.  And for good reason.  The combination of emerging technologies, continuing downward pressure on rates, and changes in risk profiles are forcing examination of new products and processes in order to meet owners’ and shareholders’ expectations

The problem is that that business as usual will not get us there.  We need to carefully examine our markets and products, identify new opportunities (likely using big data and advanced analytics) and provide specific products and risk management services to meet the new needs.

Ah, but the filthy lucre…

Fundamental changes may be necessary.  The  challenge is that a number of insurers are still absorbing the costs of technology modernization.  The hard reality is that the pattern of massive systems upgrades every 20 years (or longer) does not fit the pattern of  today’s business.

A number of the major vendors are adopting cloud based solutions, helping to smooth costs, but a more fundamental solution is required.

And this is where transformation becomes important…

When I started out working between IT and business users, one of the biggest challenges was getting users to actually use the technology.  It was regarded as a small step above clerical.

Things evened out with the advent of personal computers, but these were frequently parallel processors, duplicating the work of the  mainframe in order to get information more quickly and in a format they could understand.

The commercial internet started to bring real change.  Business users could quickly relate to new applications which drove customers or cut service expenses.  This ultimately formed the foundation of the massive build in apps.

IT fades as users take control…

Like the early PC days, users are the drivers of these apps.  And this is where transformation fits in.  While technology is necessary, the sufficient demand comes form the business user side.  These are the folks that are preparing to transform business.

To misquote a past US president: “Technology is too important to be left to the technologists.”

And Insurers see a path forward…

Competition is demanding new sources of business, and technology is gong to play significant role.   And transformation will be a key target.

We have an agenda at the 2016 Technology Conference rich with practitioners and analysts who will provide information on transformation.  We hope you are going to be participate, but if not, we will post on the outcomes of the transformation.

What do you think?

Is transformation on your agenda?  Should it be?  What do you expect will be the outcome?

We’ll share the consensus from the conference.