What is the Achilles heel of the insurance industry?

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Technological issues in the insurance industry are often the subject of criticism from insiders and clients. However, ideas from industry leaders suggest that insurance companies are starting to look to the future, and brokers are playing an important role.

Some brokers are pushing insurance companies to digitally update themselves while others face complex risk assessments that even the best technology can’t handle.

Insurance companies like Sydney-based Open Insurance were founded in response to the historic weakness of technology in the insurance industry.

Read more : Insurance company Open begins global expansion

“Insurance is a place where a lot of customers are unhappy with the service and product they buy and there are a lot of issues that arise from decades old situations,” said CEO Jonathan Buck (top photo) who founded Insurtech in 2016.

Buck said these issues don’t just affect insurance customers. The back offices and business operations of insurance companies are severely hampered by inefficiency and misuse of information. Decision making is impacted.

“As an insurance company, the main thing we need to do well is make good decisions,” he said.

Buck said the answer is good data, good algorithms, and good technology.

“What we’ve seen in the insurance industry for decades is underinvestment in technology and that was really the thesis behind the business before we started, to create the company of. Most data-driven and automated insurance, to solve customer problems, making it faster, making it cheaper, ”he said.

Buck said the new automation technology is well suited for general insurance where there are mass markets, lots of data, and risk is relatively easy to assess. Technology is also starting to tackle more complex industries like small business insurance.

But Buck admits that where risk is more complex, technology can’t provide all the answers.

“Brokers have a role to play where it is not a simple risk,” he said.

He noted that in these situations the risks can be very specific to a particular business.

“These are almost literally unique risks that need to be understood and assessed,” he said. “It would be difficult to fully automate. “

Read more : Technology should “help brokers, not replace them”

Daniel Gronert (pictured below), CEO of Arteva Funding, said the insurance industry suffers from a very slow market to adopt new technologies.

“Historically, yes, very slow, slow to respond and requiring human intervention in collecting data and purchasing and issuing an invoice to purchase an insurance policy,” said the CEO of one of Australia’s largest independent insurance premium players. finance sector.

But Gronert said he saw brokers pushing insurance companies to change.

“So the brokers who have worked hard to integrate with insurance companies and design a software platform that allows them to go away and almost instantly ask each of those insurers what your best price and your best product for that particular customer and then send it back to the customer for them to buy there and then on their website, ”he said.

He added that brokers have struggled to convince insurance companies to adapt, in part because insurance companies do not want to give up control of their information.

“Insurance companies have always been very afraid to do this kind of thing, to allow brokers to have this automated information available without a human being involved in the transaction,” he said.

Gronert said the brokers who have been successful in doing this over the past few years “have experienced tremendous growth.”

He was specifically referring to the BizCover brokerage platform, which meets the insurance needs of SMEs.

Nick Cunningham (pictured below), CEO of Atlantis Premium Funding, agrees that many insurance companies are still “steeped in this old way of doing things”.

However, he said insurance companies are improving their software that interacts with customers. The biggest problem, he noted, is the back office platforms used by trading partners like brokers and premium lenders.

“The biggest challenge in the brokerage industry, and the same for us, is probably that the actual software and platforms that the insurance industry operates on are quite old, so you have to invest there,” a- he declared.

But he doesn’t think the insurance industry is hiding its head in the sand.

“I think there are changes coming and I think there is probably some disruption on the front as well, which will make it easier for brokers and hopefully improve for clients,” Cunningham said. .


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