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A.M. BEST'S MONTHLY INSURANCE MAGAZINE


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The use of intelligent solutions across the enterprise can help insurers successfully improve outcomes and reinvent business processes.
  • Jim Bramblet
  • November 2018
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Jim Bramblet

Jim Bramblet

The true leaders in applying intelligent solutions are doing so to help reimagine entire business processes, worker engagement and customer experiences.

As insurers continue to face heightened customer expectations and cost pressures, now is the time for them to move from experimenting with artificial intelligence in the laboratory to deploying it at scale across several business processes. Doing so will drive better performance and enhance operational efficiencies.

By embedding intelligent solutions such as AI, machine learning and analytics into every business process, insurers could reap a 10% to 20% improvement in annual profitability. For those in the North American marketplace, that collectively would be worth $10.4 billion to $20.8 billion every year.

Intelligent solutions could also enable a whole new level of personalization and convenience for the customer. They could also transform a host of insurance business processes, including managing claims data and generating sales leads.

More than half of insurers already use intelligent solutions in one or more business processes, and 46% are investing in or piloting them to streamline selected business processes and customer experiences, according to Accenture.

Among the reasons for doing so are to rethink human/machine collaboration to drive speed, quality and consistency of outcomes; harness data and analytics to drive new insights and reinvent business processes. However, most carriers remain relatively immature in their use of intelligent solutions and have not yet scaled and industrialized their deployments. Insurers that treat intelligent solutions as isolated technology investments won't be capitalizing on the solutions' full business potential.

Those same insurers start out using intelligent solutions with a technology-centric pilot to evaluate a single technology, such as robotic process automation, as a tool for business improvement. Then they apply the tool to an existing process without considering how those technologies could change their procedures. As they mature in their usage, insurers should consider three dimensions:

  • Capabilities. Intelligent solutions are not a single technology but an array of capabilities and toolsets. Carriers should look at the business problem they're hoping to solve and consider which technologies can be combined to make it happen.
  • Processes and experiences. Rather than using intelligent solutions with existing processes, insurers should create self-optimizing “living” processes that use machine-learning algorithms and real-time data to continuously improve the procedures.
  • Platforms. Carriers need to recognize that intelligent solutions represent a new platform capability, similar to existing core systems such as policy and claims or workflow and business process management solutions. Intelligent solutions scale best when they integrate the architecture, technologies, people, skills, processes and governance necessary to enable rapid quality deployment and management.

The true leaders in applying intelligent solutions are doing so to help reimagine entire business processes, worker engagement and customer experiences, rather than just making small improvements to existing business procedures.

We're now starting to see a greater willingness among insurers to use intelligent solutions across the entire business value chain to create a competitive advantage throughout all day-to-day processes. Applied intelligence and intelligent solutions are the next playing fields on which the industry will start to separate leaders and laggards.

 

Best’s Review contributor Jim Bramblet is the North America insurance practice lead at Accenture. He can be reached at bestreviewcomment@ambest.com.


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