'We must collaborate to innovate'
By Lautaro Mon, Charles Taylor InsureTech
Digitisation is sweeping through the insurance industry, but the market must collaborate to realise its full potential for innovation.
It still costs too much money to process business in London and a lot of that expense is wasted on manually transferring information from one place to another.
Widespread digitalisation projects are helping address some of the inefficiencies that exist; however, this rapid overhaul has created inefficiencies of its own as participants must now navigate an increasingly complex universe of disparate company and market portals, applications and APIs, as well as legacy IT systems, often requiring costly workarounds to ensure systems can communicate with each other.
Digital ecosystems provide a shared infrastructure into which multiple stakeholders can plug their systems and applications, generating cost savings and efficiencies while ensuring all participants speak to each other seamlessly using the same data. This breaks the cycle of having to start from scratch with each new innovation.
A single source of truth
Connected systems improve quality of business and customer experience by ensuring a single source of truth flows through the value chain, increasing the speed at which decisions can be made. Once data is captured within an ecosystem it gets reused throughout the insurance life cycle and can also be augmented with external data, improving decision-making at every step of the insurance process.
Digital ecosystems provide a shared infrastructure into which multiple stakeholders can plug their systems and applications, generating cost savings and efficiencies while ensuring all participants speak to each other seamlessly using the same data
Meanwhile, customers are increasingly demanding integrated experiences and insurance players with limited budgets are striving to innovate to meet those customer needs. Accessing an interconnected and extendable set of products and services through an ecosystem or hub allows them to fulfil and deliver a variety of needs in one integrated customer experience, while also reducing costs and avoiding lengthy IT projects.
However, with insurers needing to connect with a variety of counterparties and market systems to do business and many market participants still using legacy IT systems, ecosystems that only integrate seamlessly with state-of-the-art applications or a single vendor’s solutions offer little value. Ecosystems must harnesses cutting-edge technology to enable innovation while also empathising with the existing insurance IT landscape.
This means enabling market participants to connect with both legacy systems and a range of best-in-breed tools from across the marketplace. Charles Taylor’s new ecosystem solution, InHub, for example, uses open API architecture to seamlessly integrate with a wide variety of vendors’ systems – even including Charles Taylor’s competitors.
InHub, which launches in the first quarter of 2022, is an integration framework uniting Charles Taylor InsureTech’s capabilities with other third-party systems, existing IT landscapes, market data and industry services, helping customers orchestrate best-in-class industry solutions. The idea is to plug the core system into the hub, add the software and services needed using only one integration and grow from there.
Insurance has historically invested less in technology than banking peers and been slower to embrace a collaborative ecosystem approach. However, the only way to achieve the innovation seen in fintech is to collaborate. Without collaboration, genuine disruption may only be attainable by very large companies.
Lautaro Mon is chief product officer at Charles Taylor InsureTech
Mon is one of the speakers in a live webinar hosted by Insurance Day, entitled “How can technology providers, insurtechs and insurers grasp the opportunity of a rapidly modernising market?”, at 3 pm on September 29.
He will join fellow panellists George Beattie, head of incubation underwriting for Beazley, Andrew Johnston, global head of insurtech at Willis Re, and Thomas Anderson, director of US Sales for AdvantageGo, to discuss a range of themes including the growing role of digital ecosystems in improving speed, connectivity and efficiency in the London market.