It was with “no pun intended” that Matthew Kearney, VP of Strategy, CX & Transformation at NTT DATA UK&I, noted that there was no blueprint for the two Blueprint Two Foundational Playbooks produced by NTT Data, on behalf of Lloyd’s of London.
December 2022 saw the release of the Blueprint Two Foundational Playbook for Brokers, a follow-up to August’s Blueprint Two Foundational Playbook for Managing Agents – two bodies of work designed to support MGAs and brokers with their planning for the adoption of Blueprint Two. And speaking with Insurance Business, Kearney emphasised how closely the NTT team worked with Lloyd’s and trade bodies including the LMA and LIIBA to get the documents over the line.
“Blueprint Two is proper transformational work,” he said. “Because you’re not transforming a company, you’re not even really transforming a market – you’re transforming an ecosystem. And there’s a Venn diagram of interests, so not everybody’s interests are aligned in terms of what they need to do.”
The “audacious” idea behind the playbooks was pioneered by NTT’s head of London Specialty Insurance, Cassandra Vukorep, Kearney said. She had seen first-hand that the initial material being produced for the market concerning Blueprint Two – while well-presented – was not substantial enough for parts of the market in terms of insight and implementation advice.
“As NTT Data, we focus mainly on the underwriting market,” Vukorep said. “And we had quite a few accounts approaching us with the same question – how should we start adapting to Future at Lloyd’s? There were a lot of questions and people seemed to be spinning their wheels and spending money on consultancies to try and figure that out.”
NTT has a strong relationship with the LMA, particularly Sheila Cameron and Rob Myers, Vukorep said, and knowing that the association represents 55 of the market’s insurers begged the question, “why are they all independently trying to figure out how to connect into Future at Lloyd’s when we could give them a guide?” She made the initial pitch to Cameron and later Myers, and the LMA ran with the idea.
The concept was pitched to a number of COOs across the market to take the temperature of their interest, she said, and, within weeks, the partnership had a statement of work. Following its launch, the success of the initial playbook for MGAs was such that NTT Data broadened its area of focus, working with Lloyd’s and LIIBA to create the second document to provide brokers with both an understanding of Blueprint Two and a strategy for implementation.
The playbook digs into the systems and processes identified by Blueprint Two as key to delivering the Future at Lloyd’s and identifies not just how brokers can plan for their implementation, but also the benefits of the transformational change.
“This is about the practicalities [of Blueprint Two],” she said. “We want to help the market get ready. Everybody will need to change. As we know, digitisation is not just simply flicking a switch, there’ll be processes that need to change, and there’ll be system changes. It’s not going to be an overnight thing. But everybody’s willing and excited to do it. So, we recognised that if we can just give them a roadmap of how to do it, as opposed to them trying to navigate with a compass and by the stars, that would be a lot more helpful.”
The playbooks have been created and distributed with several key goals in mind, noted Kearney, and at the heart and central to its ambitions are to get everybody in the market on the same page. This is about making sure everybody has the same understanding and the same access to information, he said, because some organisations and individuals have been more involved than others in this transformational program.
This document is about helping people truly understand the Blueprint Two vision, he said, as sometimes that vision can become a bit blurred with all the focus on what it takes to implement it. At its core, he said, Blueprint Two is simply the first significant step towards digitising the market – which, once implemented, will have a significant impact on a firm’s ability to automate everything from its risk selection, risk pricing and premium calculations to its claims handling
“So that’s the sort of panacea we’re looking to get to,” he said, “[where] you can effectively operate in the manner to which we’ve become used to as consumers in lots of other parts of our lives already.”
But NTT’s playbook is also about helping brokers understand how the multitude of different components within Blueprint Two fit together and what all those components need to do. Each component requires a different level of planning, he said, with brokers able to prepare for some fully now, while others can currently only facilitate high-level planning, with others still lacking the information required to know what to plan for.
“Being able to clarify what you can actually do now and what you can’t do is really important,” he said, “as is getting a single-view of the known unknowns…. So now we’ve got a single list of all the things people would need to know to be able to implement this and to know when it’s coming… And we have a self-assessment template we created so people can actually go and assess where they are, which has been really helpful.”
The reaction from the market so far has been very strong, Kearney said, with attendance at the blueprints’ launch sessions very high and feedback from the trade bodies it is partnering with consistently positive. As a transformational project, Blueprint Two is very much a distance race rather than a sprint, and so too are these foundational blueprints which will evolve in accordance with the development of the program.
Vukorep cited the accessibility and digestibility of the playbooks as an advantage that has received significant feedback in recent weeks. The way it has been created allows readers to engage with the elements that are applicable to them, she said, and having the support of eminent trade bodies behind the documents has made this a ‘whole market’ endeavour. She paid special tribute to the trade associations who have worked so tirelessly to help create and promote these blueprints.
In addition to working with the LMA for the first blueprint and LIIBA for the second, Kearney said, the NTT team has also engaged with the International Underwriting Association of London (IUA) – the trade body for the company market side of the ecosystem. The third playbook, which is aimed at company market players, completes the triumvirate ambitions of this body of work and fits in with NTT’s overall ambition of moving the whole market in the right direction.
“This is about enabling people to act and to plan as far as possible, and to have a view on when they’ll be able to take the next steps after that,” he said. “The idea is that this is the foundational playbook now and, when the appropriate level of information is available in the New Year, there will be a full playbook to support brokers, managing agents and company market players alike. What we’re looking to do is take people from fretting about things to acting on them.”
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