Disruptive Technology: A Leverage for the Insurance Industry

As groundbreaking technologies evolve rapidly, they are likely to have a significant impact on the changing world economy. They supplant existing technologies and/or procedures thus making traditional organisational skills and approaches obsolete.

Disruptive technologies would reshape the insurance industry. Indeed, disruptive technologies such as mobile computing, cloud technology, social networks and Big Data have a clearly defined place in the insurance industry and should be welcomed. The best performing insurance companies respond to rapid changes in the market through innovation, which often enables them to maintain an edge over their competitors.

Disruptive technology has a specific feature. As its name indicates, it disrupts the existing market – which it enhances or destroys – and profoundly modifies the economic landscape. There are examples in recent history: engines made animal traction obsolete, the telephone signed the death warrant of the telegram and digital photography spelt doom for analogue.

Social media is creating new communication opportunities for enterprises and brands. Twitter and Facebook, for example, enable innovative contacts to be established with clients by way of personalised relationship, special operations and sharing of exclusive information. Insurance companies have a specific need to develop a healthy client relationship and are therefore availing themselves of this new mode of communication.

Today, the relationship between insurance companies, intermediaries and clients has been upset with the arrival of mobile technology. Whereas in the past, requests from clients to insurance companies were made in writing through intermediaries, these days inquiries can be made directly with the use of mobile telephony. Some, however, use big data technology for traditional decision-making, based on internal data.

Cloud computing is a concept that consists in processing data, which is traditionally hosted on local servers or on the user's workstation, from remote storage servers. This has numerous advantages in the professional world; for example, the ability to access services online without having to manage the associated infrastructure, which often represents a complex problem.

Disruptive technology will lead to profound changes in the way companies carry out their activities in the years ahead. Indeed, proactive companies that react quickly and decisively to the new technology will derive immense benefits while the others struggle to adapt their business models.

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