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Solving the insurance industry customer relevance riddle with AI


Insights derived via artificial intelligence (AI) can help those in the insurance field discover and satisfy customers’ true wants and needs.

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Across most industries, the convergence of technologies has led to change in buyer and seller behaviors. But the insurance industry has long considered itself immune to these changes. It’s felt protected by strong barriers to outside competition: strict industry regulation, the scale necessary to create a risk portfolio based on the law of large numbers, the time necessary to establish a trust relationship with customers, and customer inertia.¹

In these shifting insurance markets, nontraditional players are increasingly setting the tone and encroaching on insurance territory with new business models, blurring traditional industry boundaries.

To stay relevant, insurers need to reframe their roles and to shift from a react-and-pay mode to a predict-and-prevent approach. To support this shift, they can use data, including unstructured data, at each step of the customer journey. Much of the data around people, assets, and context is unstructured, whether it’s text images, audio, or other content. As the sum of all data created, captured, or replicated grows exponentially, the share of unstructured data is also increasing.

To effectively use data on this scale, insurers need to become what we call Cognitive Insurers. Cognitive Insurers embrace the latest technologies, most notably AI, to make sense of the abundance of this unstructured data. Insurers can benefit from embracing technologies such as AI.

¹ Bieck, Christian, Lynn Kesterson-Townes, Anthony Marshall, and Indranil Nath. “Innovating insurance: Lessons from the world’s leading innovators.” IBM Institute for Business Value. March 2016. https://www.ibm.com/thought-leadership/institute-business-value/report/innovatinginsurance

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How can IBM help you?

Insurers face competing pressures to innovate and control costs. We’re here to help you modernize at lower cost, meet regulatory requirements and exceed customer expectations.

Learn more about IBM Insurance solutions

Successful insurers are relentlessly focused on customer needs. Watson Expert Assist from IBM with artificial intelligence (AI) for insurance allows agents to spend more time listening to customers instead of searching multiple systems, spreadsheets or documents for answers.

Learn more about AI solutions for insurance


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Meet the authors:

Brian C. Goehring

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, AI/Cognitive and Analytics Lead, IBM Institute for Business Value;
Christian Bieck, Global Insurance Leader, IBM Institute for Business Value; Praveen Velichety

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, Global Emerging Technologies Consulting Leader for Insurance, IBM Global Business Services

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