Nobody will accuse insurance of being the sexiest industry. But it may just be the most important. As technologies shape the future of the world in ways most of us never anticipated, insurers will need to keep up.
Here are what industry insiders see as the future of the insurance industry:
1. Marina Cvetkovic, VP of Strategy and Chief of Staff to the CEO of Swiss Re
“There is a lot of talk about insurtech, but I would say the future of insurance is in tech-insure. Insurance is about data and the large tech companies will very soon surpass, if they haven't already, the amount of data they possess compared to insurance companies. Insurance companies will survive if they turn into service providers, offering insurance products to the large tech companies who will own the data and dictate the terms. Tech companies will be facing the insurance end customers.”
2. Patricia Renzi, Principal at Milliman
“Insurance needs to change to be more customer focused. This will require cooperation of insurers and regulators to shift how we define insurance, and how we communicate with customers. If we focus on customer needs and remember that insurance is what provides individuals protection against unexpected events, such that they can continue to thrive, we can provide the means for people to escape poverty, to protect their homes and their families, to retire with security, to not be bankrupted by a health crisis. We need to better communicate the tremendous societal value of insurance and help people protect themselves and their families. We need to build stronger trust, and we can do that through better communication and engagement.”
3. Karn Saroya, CEO of Cover
“Regarding insurance distribution, I believe that anywhere insurable property is sold or managed, it will be embedded via API. Insurance entities will need to look, act and feel like tech companies in the ways they’re using data sets to distinguish good risk from bad risk.”
4. Samantha Kohn, Communications Manager at Mobials, Inc.
“With increased competition and market saturation, the future of the insurance industry is utility value. The cost of customer acquisition is extremely high, and most insurance companies are currently operating solely on transactional value, rather than utility value. This means that marketing efforts and resources are being spent attracting and signing new clients, but once that contract is signed, very little effort is being made to provide continued value, also known as utility value. In order to compete, insurance companies will need to start focusing on utility value — continuing to provide customers with value that entices them to stay.”
5. Jiten Puri, Founder and CEO of PolicyAdvisor
“Product: Changing consumer preferences, data ubiquity, and deep learning capabilities will transform insurance from an episodic protection product with a one-time benefit payment, to a SAAS-like prevention and enrichment product, with insurers offering ongoing services (e.g. in health and
Process: Data ubiquity will allow carriers to integrate with third-party
data ecosystems to measure ‘everything at all times’, thereby making better targeting and underwriting decisions. Non-traditional sources of data (e.g. wearable/biometric data, VR-enabled selfies, social media footprints) will become embedded in life insurance underwriting models.
Pricing: As data latency reduces, life insurance pricing will be less
weighted to historical population-derived actuarial models and focused more on insights from personalized and real-time risk assessments. Better underwriting will lead to more precise and tailored pricing.”
6. Chris Acker, CLU, ChFC, CB Acker Associates Insurance Services
“Twenty years ago, the industry thought that we were doomed when renewal commissions were eliminated from term life insurance policies, but here we are in 2019 and the life insurance business is alive and well. The life insurance industry is the most resilient business in the world because consumers understand the importance of proper life insurance coverage and now, more than ever, it's easier to obtain. So, in my opinion, the future of insurance, and life insurance in particular , is bright.”
7. Jayant Lakshmikanthan, CEO and Founder of CLARA analytics
“This may sound a bit abstract and futuristic, but AI advances have already led to a whole new market segment: InsurTech. The rise of InsurTech indicates that the insurance industry is changing profoundly as it modernizes. The ability to analyze countless data points in mere seconds opens ways to assess and predict that humans simply cannot hope to accomplish. This does not mean that humans are no longer needed in the industry. Quite the contrary. People still possess higher-level thinking skills that machines are not equipped to gain. The capacity to factor in intangibles, to make judgement calls, to see and interpret what lies beyond the screen — these are human skills that will always be in demand.”
8. Joel Ohman, Founder of Car Insurance Comparison
“One of the single biggest ways that insurtech like AI will affect the
insurance industry will be in the major role it plays in autonomous/self-driving vehicles. In the near term, auto insurance rates will likely increase, since insurers will be uncertain how to price the uncharted territory of self-driving vehicles. However, in the long term, rates will likely decrease significantly because of the likely increase in safe driving habits that self-driving cars will exhibit as compared to their fallible human counterparts.”
9. Phil Murphy, VP of Insurance at Ethos
“People often avoid buying life insurance altogether because the process is burdensome, outdated and confusing, which unfortunately gambles their family’s future. Consumers are looking for a new type of insurance provider that offers a simpler, more accessible experience, so the future of insurance belongs to the insurance players who will be able to adapt to this need.”
10. Doug Kelley, Managing Director at Bluedrop Services
“We have found cybersecurity to be one of the main elements shaping the future of insurance. It is creating impact across all markets; business, fleet and personal insurances. We are finding more and more clients coming to us for advice on how to calculate their cyber insurance coverage. With significant growth in the use of big data and artificial intelligence the concerns over increased risk of exposure and ‘silent cyber’ need to be quantified so as not to leave insurers wide-open to significant loss.”
11. David Peterson, Senior Director of Marketing and Strategy at HealthMarkets
“Companies like Amazon have made it easy to compare prices anywhere, at any time. Consumers expect that across everything -and that includes insurance shopping. The future winners in the insurance industry will prize customer experience and delight clients at every turn — much like Amazon has done — by leveraging data.”
12. Anita Sathe, Chief Strategy Officer at CoverHound and CyberPolicy
“We live in a digital world. Our businesses rely on the use of computers. We store confidential information about employees, customers and vendors. Unfortunately, traditional forms of business insurance don’t protect businesses from the risks that exist due to the digital world we operate in. This is why companies of all sizes are turning to cyber insurance to keep themselves in business. According to research conducted by my company, demand for cyber insurance has skyrocketed among small businesses. In Q2 of 2018 alone, 30 percent of our commercial insurance shoppers purchased cyber coverage, compared to just 12% one year ago.”
13. Jeff Schwab, Vice President of Marketing for Dominion National
“The effective sharing of data between medical and dental providers can help facilitate care coordination between the disciplines. As healthcare providers, dental providers and insurance companies continue to find ways to partner and share critical patient data, collaborative outreach efforts to educate and influence certain populations such as diabetics and other chronic care patients can lead to improved health outcomes.”
14. Sa El, Co-Founder of Simply Insurance
“The future of insurance is going to have fewer agents but more specialized ones. This will happen because it's much easier to get educated on life insurance as a consumer.
Being more educated means more people will continue to buy online while bypassing the insurance agent.
This means we will need to become more specialized in multiple lines of insurance and maybe even become CFP's to offer more to our overall clients.”
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