We’ve never conducted any kind of formal or official poll on this. But we’re willing to bet that if we asked most insurers and their employees if they considered their software to be an asset to their organizations and their people — or some kind of threat or liability — the majority would say the latter. Notwithstanding our own (hurt) feelings, that’s just not right. And vendors may be as much or more responsible for those sentiments as insurers.
What if, on the other hand, insurers considered their software to be an unconditional asset? And what if, rather than a threat of a liability, their people viewed the company’s software as helping them to make more valuable contributions to the organization? What if they saw the software, in fact, as a source of job security, helping them to make more valuable contributions to the organization, thereby increasing their value, their longevity, and their satisfaction? Would that be some kind of a pipedream? It shouldn’t be.
Higher Table Stakes
Insurance technology has advanced to the point at which configurability is an entry card. If their software doesn’t come with configuration tools, vendors won’t get a seat at the table, let alone be in the game. Those configurations tools free the people in IT departments to create business value — assess technologies, align IT with business goals, develop and maintain resilient, secure infrastructures. Given the rate at which configuration tools continue to advance, it’s not hard to imagine a day in which any BA can install any core-processing software in any insurance company. Another pipedream? Don’t be so sure.
The efficiencies enabled by software already reduce redundant data entry, while the portals provided by software allow increasing degrees of self-service and reduce the need for heavily staffed customer service departments. And if those efficiencies reduce the need for people to perform mundane, menial, and administrative tasks (they do), that means those same people can contribute more value to their organizations in higher-level, revenue-generating, risk-managing, and loss-mitigating positions. Call that a pipedream if you like. But it’s as inevitable as it is desirable.
Here It Comes
That sensation you feel is the rush of progress. The pipedreams are over. The future is here. And it brought reality with it.
Get ready, or get left behind.