WINDSOR, Conn., Feb. 8, 2010—More than 80 percent of IT executives believe the increased need for business analytics and intelligence will have a considerable impact on insurance and financial services companies’ businesses in the next five years, according to a recent LIMRA global survey. Of note were advancements in online capabilities, electronic processing and the protection of confidential information.
“Beyond the obvious expanded use of the Internet to enhance marketing and customer service, our survey revealed that data mining, predictive modeling, and forecasting will be vital to insurance and financial companies as they seek to remain competitive,” said Mary Art, LIMRA research director and author of the report. “While insurance and financial company databases have typically been rich with information, the ability to leverage the data across business lines to form a complete picture of their customers has been a challenge.”
LIMRA asked financial services experts worldwide to identify and assess emerging technologies and potential environmental challenges that may impact the distribution of insurance and financial services. The report, Tech Quake: Predicting the Global Impact of Technology, examines those technologies that were most often cited as having an extreme or considerable impact on the industry over the next five years.
About 220 million people (74 percent) Americans have access to the Internet1 and in a separate LIMRA survey, more than 85 percent of consumers view the Internet as a good source of information for insurance. This trend will not only continue but is likely to intensify in the next five years, according to 96 percent of the IT executives surveyed.
In addition, executives predict that companies will need a new approach to reach the younger generations. Consumers in their 20s and 30s have grown up with the Internet and use it for many of their day-today activities. Consequently, IT executives foresee more consumers expecting online service capabilities, the ability to see all products they own with a company across all business lines on a single screen, as well as easy-to-use, self-service Web sites. More than three-quarters of IT executives believe that electronic business processing will have considerable impact on marketing and distributing insurance and financial products worldwide. This includes e-signatures, online applications processing, straight –through processing. Adoption of these technologies will not only save the companies money but improve service and save time for the customer.
Data breaches can be extremely costly to companies, in terms of brand impact, customer loyalty and record recovery. Over 75 percent of IT executives agree that detecting and preventing the unauthorized use and transmission of confidential information will be a high priority in the next few years. Additionally, two-thirds of IT executives feel reputation management will be critical as social media expands into the business environment in the coming years.
1 Rainie, Lee, Internet, Broadband, and Cell Phone Statistics, Pew Internet & American Life Project, January 5, 2010.
LIMRA is a worldwide research, consulting and professional development organization that helps more than 850 insurance and financial services companies in 73 countries increase their marketing and distribution effectiveness. Visit LIMRA at www.limra.com.