The insurance innovation imperative: A view from other industries

View from other industries

With so many self-confessed ‘fast followers’, insurers are already eyeing leading practices in the technology and financial sectors. However, less obvious areas, such as retail or healthcare, to mine more unique product and service innovation should not be overlooked.

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While two-fifths of respondents say they are fast followers and two-thirds say they already look to other industries for inspiration – only one-in-ten say that their greatest source of new ideas comes from this type of competitive intelligence. The majority of respondents seem keenly focused on the technology and banking sectors, likely due to their potential to disrupt, we believe that there are other industries with deep expertise in innovation that the insurance industry could learn from.

Innovations emerging from leading industries

The technology sector

The Internet of Things (IoT) is already having a massive impact on some insurers, and as the IoT becomes more mainstream, we expect to see massive opportunities unfold for the insurance sector. Wearable devices will provide insurers with unprecedented insight into the health of policy holders, and home monitoring will provide home owners and their insurance providers with data – and control – over key risks in the home.” Gary Matuszak, Global Head of Technology, KPMG International.

The retail sector

“One of the biggest transformations has been what leading retailers call the ‘omni-channel’ approach, and providing a seamless experience across multiple touch points. Retailers quickly realized they need a clear view of the customer and their unique needs, preferences and demands. The better the retailer knows their customer, the more individualized (and hopefully, profitable) the offering can be, and the better the experience for the consumer.” Mark Larson, Global Head of Retail, KPMG International.

The automotive sector

“As more safety systems are embedded in new vehicles, insurers are getting access to detailed driver information which, in turn, should help them better understand and manage risk. The real benefit for insurers will come when they can move from having a view of customers based on their past actions towards a more ‘life-oriented’ view that reflects individual patterns of behavior. So far, the auto sector is driving this agenda, rather than insurers, and insurance companies must begin collaborating with new partners and develop a clearer understanding of future customer risks in order to meet market demand.” Dieter Becker, Global Head of Automotive, KPMG International.

The US healthcare sector

“New regulations, health insurance exchanges, the growing convergence between healthcare providers and health plans, and rising consumer power, are driving US–based health insurance providers to think very differently about how they deliver products and services in the future. Recent acquisitions show that insures are serious about investing in technologies that help them prepare for a new business environment. Some are embedding new technologies and capabilities directly into their core businesses, while others are exploring ways to incubate and develop these technologies into services they can offer either as a new revenue stream or as a stand-alone service organization.” Ash Shehata, Principal, KPMG in the US.

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