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Insurtech 10: Trends for 2019

Insurtech 10: Trends for 2019

The top 10 insurtech trends that will shape the insurance industry in 2019.

The top 10 insurtech trends that will shape the insurance industry in 2019.

The insurance industry is on the brink of a major revolution as adoption of insurtech enters a new phase.

Data is the driving force for these innovations, as it remains tantalizingly close, but not yet in the full control of many businesses. There are no quick fixes that allow insurers to clean up their data. Insurtech is the means to transform insurance from an arcane policy-led industry into one that succeeds by placing the customer at the heart of everything it does.


New ways of doing business

In the coming year there will be an increase in the level of implementation of new and innovative approaches to transform the way insurance companies do business. This is not about digitizing the legacy business, but about demonstrating to the whole organization that there is a different way of working that doesn’t only present risk, but brings positive energy, new opportunities and rewarding outcomes. This means moving beyond tinkering with components of the value chain that has epitomized some early flirtations with insurtech and seeking to implement solutions that will transform the whole business.


Moving beyond the comfort zone

Businesses are asking their people to build a new customer centric architecture, design propositions and products, and launch them with new governance and controls that connect into the core functional systems of HR, finance, etc. This will require a totally new approach and result in the development of a digital greenfield, which could allow them to move beyond the current structures and culture to achieve their objectives. It may not be totally necessary to go ‘off grid’ in order to develop the solutions insurers need. Decoupling from existing governance structures can be uncomfortable, but organizations must push for this in order to break down the cultural obstacles that are holding them back.


Transformation requires leadership

Executives must embrace this change and rapidly, if they are to benefit from the opportunities and not get left behind as the industry is transformed. Most of the failures that have come from IT projects arise from trying to integrate and navigate through legacy structures and systems. Insurers must think in terms of running a two-speed business that preserves the qualities of the old, while placing their talent, focus and digital energy towards the new model, which will become the engine of their transformed business. This requires leadership to recognize it is not just about changing technology, but also about shifting the business model. It is expected to become the new business as usual, but this requires many of the old skills to navigate the data and security controls that must be in place to build products and platforms that operate in a new global marketplace.


Working in partnership

More partnership between insurers and insurtech companies are likely to develop over the coming years. However, an area for concern, and which may explain the tentative moves made by some players, is in the area of business integration. Not in terms of middleware, there is an abundance of functional technology available in the marketplace, but in the areas of advisory, engineering or architecture. This has been the missing link, and for insurtech to succeed, both innovators and insurers will need to work with business integration specialists in a three-way partnership. There is a clear need for insurers to bridge that gap between having a great idea and turning it into a brilliant business model. We know that plugging in technology isn’t going to make it happen all on its own; it must be part of a program to reengineer the whole organization into a fully connected digital business.

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