Report: The Future of Insurance


As Big Data Creates More Opportunities, Let’s Continue to Keep the Customer First

Data is being generated, stored, and utilized at a rapidly growing pace. Consider that by 2020 new information produced per second for every human being will reach 1.7 megabytes. And the volume of big data will increase from 4.4 zettabytes to roughly 44 zettabytes or 44 trillion GB.

This is creating incredible opportunities to help companies and their customers collaborate more efficiently in the form of better, faster, and more valuable interactions. But it’s also creating challenges in terms of technology, data science, as well as increased consumer privacy concerns. With all that’s possible in today’s data-rich environment, it can be easy to lose sight of the ultimate beneficiary—the consumer.

In a recent panel I moderated at InsureTech Connect 2018, Michael Consedine, CEO, National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC); Pranav Pasricha, CEO, Intellect SEEC; and Sofie Quidenus-Wahlforss, CEO & Founder, omni:us, discussed ways of “Cutting Through the Hype on Big Data.” The panel was united in the view that the consumer must come first, especially as we consider the implications of big data and technology. If the two lead to the wrong decisions, consumers are deeply affected. For example, the precision of AI enables theoretically “pools of 1” versus the typical insurance pools that have allowed sharing of risk across large groups of people. The implications of this potential are concerning for the very purpose of insurance.

While the panel discussed the insurance vertical, application and use of big data has implications across all sectors. The influence is present throughout the value chain, especially during marketing, product development, pricing, service, and management activities. For example, big data is being used in mortgage risk models based on data from geolocation and transaction history.

Being Accurate and Precise Creates Trusted Interactions

With so much data available, ensuring relevance, and quality is a key difference between those successfully using big data and those who are struggling to understand it. Data veracity is the degree to which data is accurate, precise, and trusted. If data is inaccurate a perfect data model will end up in perfectly incorrect decisions! Garbage in means garbage out no matter how sophisticated we become.

Being a champion big data, involves removing things like bias, abnormalities or inconsistencies, duplication, and volatility. It also requires us to be educated about the use and benefits. Big data can provide a number of innovative solutions, helping us reduce costs, save time, and allows us to be more productive. For our space, big data is making it easier to target marketing with more precision and assists with personalization—both of which improve the customer experience. Because, in the end, it’s about putting the consumer first by building trust and providing value.

Ross Shanken is Founder & CEO of Jornaya. 

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