Duck Creek Blog
Blog Post - EMEA

“Two Markets and One Technology Architecture” – A Summary of Two Webinars

June 17, 2020

Bart Patrick, Managing Director of Duck Creek Technologies in Europe, participated in two successful and well-attended webinars where the debate focussed on technology meeting the needs of two distinct areas of the insurance market – general commercial insurance, and the specialist Lloyd’s market.

There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to solving the complex technology needs of the global commercial and specialty insurance markets, but there is absolutely a singular technology architecture that can be applied across the sector.

Bart joined a host of senior insurance industry spokespeople for two recent webinars to debate the technology challenges facing our sector in the wake of the remote working challenge and other pressures presented by the global pandemic crisis.

The TINtech ‘London Market Modernisation’ webinar focused on the specialty insurance market at Lloyd’s, where the issue of a knee-jerk reaction to the COVD-19 crisis was raised.

“We must understand that there is now a new paradigm and then redesign technology around that to allow the central market function to move to a centralised technical market as opposed to a specialised market based on diversified technology,” Bart told the audience.

He said the market must not make a knee jerk action but take time to reflect and come up with a plan to move forward. Bart raised the point that insurers – and indeed the industry itself – currently suffer a crisis of image of inertia and that real fundamental changes are needed to correct this perception.

“Much of the market is made up of a loose collection of technologies glued together that keep an army of people employed. The technological spend of standing still has to be challenged, IT should be about innovation, finding different ways of working and progression. Good technology is good for the soul”

Too much money is spent on “just keeping the lights on” Bart noted, urging specialist insurance businesses not to spend their investment funds on business as usual, but make the focus true innovation.

Meanwhile, Post Magazine’s recent webinar ‘New technology alone will not save you – changing mindsets to take advantage of digital opportunities will’ focused on the global commercial insurance market.

Unlike the speciality insurance market, which is characterised by a syndicated approach to relatively low volume complex risks, the global commercial market is dominated by large insurers dealing with high volumes of less complex commercial policies almost entirely in-house, using their own technology silos. Bart commented that it has been a great effort by the industry to deal with the impact of COVID-19 but he questioned how easy it has been, whether the mismatch of many different technologies had potentially amplified the problem:

“It shouldn’t have been that hard, but insurers have decades of stuff glued together – the industry must look for more robust, distributed and, frankly, well tested cloud-based technologies.”

No quick fix

The insurance industry is now at a crossroads, and across all sectors there is a clear need for investment in digitalisation as opposed to going down the cost cutting route which could be a dangerous thing:

“I would really like the term ‘quick fix’ to be struck from insurers’ vocabulary and replaced with ‘new thinking’!,” Bart told the Post webinar audience.

“In ten years from now, the difference between a successful and a failing insurer will be the one who can serve their customers digitally – insurers should fundamentally rethink how they will service customers.”

Bart commented on how the industry should take advantage of the brilliant new technologies coming through, keep core systems open to wrap new technologies around them, and embrace the SaaS mantra of one architecture fits all – not one size fits all.

Listen to both webinars from TINtech and the Insurance POST at vFormation here:

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