The Accenture Technology Vision for Insurance 2018 report highlights how rapid advances in technology are improving the ways people work and live, and how insurers are reinventing their businesses to keep pace.

Eighty-two percent of insurance executives agree their organizations must innovate at an increasingly rapid pace just to maintain a competitive edge. Leading insurers are embracing emerging technologies such as blockchain, virtual reality, and intelligent automation, weaving themselves seamlessly into the fabric of people's everyday lives. Carriers are also broadening their ecosystems, partnering with customers, employees, startups, and even governments to help society harness the power of these technologies while mitigating their risks, empowering their own growth in the process.

Intelligent insurer unleashed

Our Insurance Technology Vision explores five trends that will profoundly impact insurers in the not-so-distant future:

Citizen AI

Artificial intelligence (AI) is becoming more autonomous and sophisticated, evolving from robotic process automation in the back-office to AI serving customers on the front-line. Our survey found that four out of five insurance executives believe within the next two years, AI will work next to humans in their organizations, as a co-worker, collaborator and trusted advisor.

To build trust with customers and employees, and reap the benefits of supercharged efficiency, insurers must acknowledge the impact AI has on people’s lives. They must “raise” their AIs to act as responsible, productive members of society.

70%

of insurance executives report that their organizations seek to gain customer trust and confidence by being transparent in their AI-based decisions and actions.

77%

of insurance executives agree: AI is advancing faster than my organization’s pace of adoption.

Extended reality

Extended reality (XR) experiences, offered through virtual and augmented reality, help insurers transcend the problem of physical distance. XR technologies improve access to people, information, and experiences. They provide immersive environments for reskilling and training employees, inspecting damaged property and interacting with customers.

As limitations such as the high cost of content creation and low market penetration are addressed, XR will grow, possibly to the point where the most powerful experiences might be virtual ones.

84%

of insurance executives state it is very important for their organization to be a pioneer in XR solutions.

84%

say XR will create a new foundation for interaction, communication, and information.

Data Veracity

Connected cars, smart homes, digital workplaces, social media, and government databases provide carriers with more data than ever before, enabling them to make better operational, risk and pricing decisions as well as to potentially create innovative business models. But, the increasing volume of data also exposes insurers to a new type of vulnerability: inaccurate, unverified and manipulated data. Insurers must implement strong cybersecurity and data science capabilities to build their data intelligence practice and ensure data veracity.

26%

of insurers say they validate data sources to some extent but admit there is more they should do to ensure data quality.

80%

of insurance executives agree automated systems create new risks including fake data, data manipulation, and inherent bias.

Frictionless business

Strategic, technology-based partnerships are enabling insurers to expand into more ecosystems than ever before. The collaboration between the auto manufacturing, ride-hailing, insurance, technology and public sectors on self-driving vehicle technology is the perfect example of this.

Many traditional insurance organizations are held back by legacy systems that weren’t built to support this expansion. Microservices architectures and the blockchain offer opportunities for insurers to build a strong foundation now for future partnerships.

66%

of insurance executives acknowledge that blockchain and smart contracts will be critical or very critical to their organizations over the next three years.

70%

report their organizations’ use of microservices will increase over the next year.

Internet of Thinking

Smart sensors and other Internet of Things devices could generate more than 500 zettabytes of data by 2020. Today’s enterprise infrastructures and the cloud alone cannot support this volume efficiently. The Internet of Thinking will extend data processing beyond the cloud, toward the edge of networks via special-purpose, customizable hardware.

84%

of insurance executives agree that edge architecture will speed the maturity of many technologies.

82%

of insurance executives agree the next generation of intelligent solutions are moving into physical environments.

The future of insurance points to carriers embedding themselves into society and helping to improve the quality of human life by playing a role in the transformation of industries such as transportation, healthcare, and even farming. Register to download the Accenture Technology Vision for Insurance 2018 report, executive summary, overview presentation and listen to the 19-minute audiobook featuring key points from this year's research.

Read Accenture's Technology Vision for Insurance 2017 Report

Andrew Starrs

Group Technology Officer – Financial Services


Emmanuel Viale

Managing Director – Accenture Technology Labs

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