Insurance Platform

How insurance platforms can accelerate new digital ecosystems

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New market pressures and technology-fueled platforms are reshaping industries at record speed, forcing companies to adapt within a new digital ecosystem. How will insurers continue to connect and build ecosystems that will enable new business models while creating great client value? Platforms enhance client value and can modernize and transform insurance. Insurers can use platforms to enable the development and take advantage of new ecosystems, while simultaneously increasing efficiency and delivering transformative experiences to differentiate from competitors.

A 2018 IBM Institute for Business Value paper titled, “The new face of insurance: How platforms can modernize and transform insurance,” surveyed 1,000 insurers across 35 countries on various questions of interest around insurance platforms – on their disruptive impacts, benefits, downsides and plans for adoption. Only 7% of insurance CxOs surveyed currently operate platforms, 26% are experimenting with the concept and 21% intend to reallocate capital to build or expand platforms. To meet these challenges, insurers look to increase agility, innovation growth and creating a model for providing risk advice offerings and complimentary services.

What is a platform and what do they do?

IBM’s platforms harness technology so that collaborators can exchange value with absolute trust at massive scale. There are three types of platforms:

  • Technology platforms enable users to access secure infrastructure, share in the benefits of technological scale and focus resources more on what makes them unique (for example, IBM Cloud)
  • Process platforms enable industry peers to unlock the value of data and reinvent back-office workflows by recomposing their organization with AI, robotics and automation, designed into key processes (IBM Group Insurance Platform)
  • Market platforms enable trusted exchange between diverse partners on a global scale, by providing secure, transparent and traceable proof of identity, ownership, payments, logistics and recourse (IBM Food Trust)

What are the priorities for implementing platform environments?

When implementing platform environments, insurers must prioritize environments to:

  • Reduce operating expense
  • Improve cycle time to drive revenue for new products and functionality
  • Captures the economic opportunity to markedly improve customer care metrics

2018 Strategic Issues Conference

On September 18, I will be at the LIMRA 2018 Strategic Issues Conference in Indonesia, presenting on “Struggling with your digital ecosystems? Platforms can help.” I will also provide an overview of platform economics alongside new explanations and recommendations on how to best integrate insurtech to successfully work with core systems providers, asset owners, industry consortia, and insurance data providers.

If you plan to attend the conference, please reach out to me to discuss more on the future of insurance platforms.

If you’re unable to attend, you can learn more about insurtech innovation in the new IBM Institute of Business Value paper, “The new face of insurance: How platforms can modernize and transform insurance,” here.

Manager, Business Innovation, IBM Global Insurance Industry

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