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The Disruptors Among Us: Start with Mobility

Robert Regis Hyle | July 28, 2014

If you’re a member of the ITA’s LinkedIn Group, you may have noticed a post that asks for opinions on what will be the greatest disruptor in the insurance industry in the next three years. What I like about the topic is it assumes that everyone believes there will be great disruptors in the insurance industry and that will take place as quickly as three years from now.

It wasn’t too long ago that the only disruptions people saw in the insurance industry were major storms or the financial market crumbling. Today, though, insurance people look beyond the issues that have faced insurance—and businesses in general—for decades. Now we can focus on the way business operates and plan a course to meet the changes that appear to be inevitable rather than merely guesswork.

It’s one thing to worry about disruptions and another to take steps to prepare for what is about to happen, even if you are exactly sure what is going to happen. Certainly the first step is to have a policy admin system that allows you to do more than you’ve ever done before, whether that includes mobility, analytics, business intelligence or whatever smart tools are available.

Once carriers have that under control, they have to be prepared to do more than react to what is happening around them. It used to be a compliment to describe a company as a fast follower of technology trends, but true success comes from leadership, not following what others do before you.

From there, you can follow the guesswork of many pundits or look inside yourself. Certainly mobile technology is becoming a major disruptor for insurers, particularly as a new generation grows fonder of its computer-in-your-pocket, the smartphone. That might change as the screen space on phones has gone from bigger to smaller back to bigger again. With advances in computing power and bandwidth, it seems likely that the ability to deal with customers the way the customer wants to do business will be one of the major disruptors.

There are plenty of possibilities out there, but I’d like to hear what you think on this subject. Send me a note or go to our LinkedIn group and let us know how you feel about disruptors.

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The Email Chat is a regular feature of the ITA Pro magazine and website. We send a series of questions to an insurance IT leader in search of thought-provoking responses on important issues facing the insurance industry.


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