The Insurance Leaders’ Perspective
- What issues are at the top of the agenda for the CEO & COO of successful insurance firms?
- Are traditional insurers digitising quickly enough, and has the coronavirus dramatically accelerated their digitalisation strategies?
- How do you build a leading insurance firm in the digital age?
- How will the role of insurers evolve over the next ten years?
- How can you maximise your business potential by a more diverse workforce and changing culture?
- How insurance and reinsurance technology solutions are transforming business.
These are just some of the questions Tom Anderson, our Director of Sales, US, asked industry leaders during the Insurance Leaders’ Perspective panel session during the recent Global Insurtech Virtual Summit.
As expected, accelerating digitisation projects was top of the agenda for our three panellists, Sarah Greasley, Chief Technology Officer & Architecture Centre of Excellence Lead, Direct Line Group; Sumit Mehra, Chief Operating Officer, Global Captive Practice, Willis Towers Watson, and Ian M Thompson, Group Chief Claims Officer, Zurich. In addition to discussing digitisation projects, speakers highlighted how their organisations have placed a real emphasis on supporting employees’ mental and physical health.
Although digital transformation projects were prioritised in the last 12 months, all three panellists outlined that focusing on employees’ well-being and building a social cohesiveness and collaborative environment through technology was just as important as ensuring that customer needs were met.
Panellists discussed the methods used to develop a more integrated way of working virtually and physically, and how to replicate, in the virtual world, the sharing of knowledge that seamlessly happens in an office environment while being supported by commercial underwriting tools.
As full-time home working almost happened overnight in the insurance industry, panellists described how they helped educate employees to use technology to it’s fullest extent and to develop tech skills along the way.
With the option of full-day and in-person education workshops out of the question in today’s virtual working environment, Sarah Greasley spoke about how adopting a curious attitude is part of Direct Line’s culture, and to nurture that constant curiosity to learn and try out new technologies, Direct Line has broken down education into bite-sized chunks that allows people to dip in and out without feeling overwhelmed.
When asked to gaze into the crystal ball for the insurance industry, panellists discussed that the insurance industry, which is still primarily proactive rather than reactive, will eventually transform to help “stop bad things happening” with a focus on personalisation and closer collaboration with Insurtechs. Panellists also chatted about where the market is heading in the next three to five years, but we won’t give away any spoilers here.
Don’t let the diary overwhelm you
A final question about how the last year has shifted their mindset prompted a personal and sincere glimpse on how the pandemic has personally affected them. All agreed that creating a more holistic way of working, ensuring employees connect with senior leaders, and having a healthy work-life balance is fundamental. One panellist said that as it’s now easier to book in video calls, we are in danger of pushing out ‘thinking space’ as our calendars become filled with meetings and calls; his piece of advice: “don’t let the diary overwhelm you”, and to force taking back reflection time. As one panellist said, “the insurance industry was, is and always will be a people-centric business; it’s about the people.”
We highly recommend you watch this candid and unambiguous discussion.