Major changes in recent history have driven the insurance industry to further embrace digital technology, according to an expert.
Craig Weber, insurance practice leader at Cognizant, recently guested on the IB Talk podcast and discussed how significant events have made their impact on society and brought about a “Golden Age” of insurance technology.
“It’s always good to have a reason to change your thinking,” Weber said. “It’s easy to ride the soft and slow change wagon, but when something happens, say COVID, natural disasters or 9/11 – these are big, seminal events in the industry that really got people thinking.”
Weber also echoed a quote from Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, which said: “We’ve seen two years’ worth of digital transformation in two months”, to demonstrate the impact of major events, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, on many industries, including insurance.
“The industry had to wake up to what was going on and react,” Weber said. “Not just insurance – every industry had to do the same thing when COVID crashed upon our shores. We had to decide whether we’re going to stop working or we’re going to keep going and find a way to make it work. And I think everyone chose the latter.”
According to Weber, the fact that a large portion of the workforce was able to work from home presented an opportunity to create some really productive change. While the pandemic has had a huge negative impact, it also woke industries up to different ways of thinking about technology.
Since the pandemic began, Weber said that insurers have been able to learn various lessons. Due to increased working from home, the surface vulnerable to cybersecurity threats has increased, which the insurance industry is working to address.
“There are other kinds of things, like wildfires, hurricanes and heatwaves, that often manifest themselves in new technology like the internet of things,” Weber said. “There’s a reason why there are so many sensors in the world and why insurers are doing so much work around capturing that data and building it into their risk and analytics. It’s really game-changing.”