Sedgwick Canada president on 2024 predictions and priorities

Surge events set to be a hot topic

Sedgwick Canada president on 2024 predictions and priorities

Insurance News

By David Saric

Surge event handling, new technology and talent are set to be high on loss adjusters’ agendas for 2024, according to Sedgwick Canada president Michael Alwyn.

Surge events are top of mind for loss adjusters in 2024, with extreme weather having ravaged Canada and speedier recoveries vital for insureds.

“Canada is seeing more regional catastrophes, and our clients want to be prepared as possible,” Alwyn told Insurance Business.  “This ties into the need for speed and efficiency, which can be supported by quality control and effective data.”

Effective data, especially available in real-time, is set to play a huge role, according to Alwyn.

“In order to meet client expectations and ensure customer satisfaction in this competitive market, claims professionals should be looking to integrate live data and instant feedback, which can help to guide decisions, provide greater transparency and speed up the claims process,” Alwyn said. “In addition, this can contribute to identifying new trends, improvement in outcomes, and other key efficiencies, such as automated auditing, real-time monitoring and risk-based analyses.”

Comprehensive disaster preparation plans, which help to sidestep the confusion when dealing with a loss event, are also set to be key this year.

“A key topic for many will be the ability to establish a plan with additional desktop and field capacity to handle surge events and provide specialty expertise and scalability of resources,” Alwyn said. “This is more important than ever as the pattern of extreme weather events worldwide continues to become more volatile, underscoring the need for climate resiliency, comprehensive disaster preparation, recovery strategies and claims processes.

“Tools, such as AI, and other new technologies will further enable Sedgwick and our industry to remain responsive and resilient as we encounter this year’s events.”

Loss adjusters are also feeling the sting of a dearth of talent

Beyond the threats of cyber and severe weather events, talent will continue to prove problematic in 2024, with business leaders needing to get more creative and resourceful to attract and retain staff, according to Alwyn.

With insurance professionals recognizing that the industry will always have to work a little harder to attract talent, Alwyn sees a path forward in tech-savvy solutions, especially with AI in helping to build up a professional acumen and confidence in new employees.

“As part of training an expert workforce, it will be crucial to handle the integration of generative AI, as it can reshape work dynamics, interpersonal interactions and cognitive processes,” he said.

This can be employed as an effective tool in attracting young professionals into the industry, especially since insurance has historically had the reputation of being traditional and not a place where innovative ideas thrive.

However, this also means that a company must prioritize the informational and developmental advantages of AI in a way that avoids any complications.

“As AI expands its use-cases across industries, ethical considerations will remain, and it will be important to cultivate trust, safety and eliminate bias. In turn, policies and regulations will have to be updated to safeguard data and protect against fraud,” Alwyn said.

Beyond the use of technology, Alwyn sees great in using mentorship programs and company-provided courses to enable more nuanced learning opportunities.

Sedgwick has set up apprentice and mentorship programs, “which pairs junior adjusters with senior adjusters for periods of 1-3 years to help ensure knowledge is transferred and key skills are developed,” Alwyn said.

The company has also set up Sedgwick University, providing courses for training purposes across all areas of expertise.

What challenges and topics will be high on the loss adjuster agenda for 2024? Share your view in the comments below.

Related Stories

Keep up with the latest news and events

Join our mailing list, it’s free!