Industry Insights

Overtaking underwriting: Cognitive process re-imagination in insurance

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Something amazing is happening in Insurance. The fact is that after more than a decade of sluggish growth and continuous cost cuttings, cognitive and other technologies are actually opening the door for the re-invention of insurance – and the industry is electric! I have been working as a consultant with Tier I carriers for over 25 years, and this is the most exciting time for insurers I have ever seen in my career. I am watching traditional, incumbent players coming up and taking off with incredibly Bold New Ideas. It’s pretty impressive to watch. That’s why I’m excited to be presenting my thoughts in an upcoming webinar — To learn more about the potential benefits for the insurer and the insured, make sure you sign up to attend!

Cloud. Cognitive. Digital. Emerging technologies are pushing a process re-invention across Insurance, and it’s beginning in Underwriting. Industry insiders know that a 1% increase in the productivity of underwriting likely corresponds to a 1% increase in revenue growth. Using cognitive computing, Insurance companies can start to clean up underwriting for the better.

Let’s face it. My clients are in the business of accepting transfers of risk. They are pricing risk so their business couldn’t be more serious. They can’t afford for inconsistencies to affect outcomes. Global Insurers today have the opportunity to use cognitive computing to mainstream underwriting activities, and allow technology to help insure that the quality of work across all underwriters is equal to the best, most senior underwriter at the organization. Cognitive computing will remove redundancies but also improve consistency and efficiency in underwriting in ways never before imaginable.

We work with Doctors at insurance companies who were once forced to search through over 400 pages of policy materials to determine if particular claims were covered. After understanding their process and requirements, we applied cognitive capabilities and tools and were able to reduce their average search time from 30 minutes to 2. That started to change everything. Our cognitive approaches are accelerating underwriting by better directing the underwriters themselves. We’ll always need Doctors applying their medical training, and we’ll need knowledgeable underwriters – but now we can truly arm them to be exponentially better informed.

So Yes – Insurance is undergoing an extremely important evolution. Industry leaders are starting now to reverse a 10-year period of stalled growth, and grab the possibilities made possible by the unstoppable velocity of emergent technology.  Bold is the word I keep coming back to. The way the industry is beginning to leverage data, technologies and a whole new expanse of cross-disciplinary skills to re-envision insurance is incredible. Cloud and cognitive eco-systems, delivering digitally – together – will change insurance. For the insurer and the insured.

Global Cognitive & Analytics Insurance Leader Partner, Global Center of Competence

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