Enterprise Risk Management Technology Guide :: Willis Towers Watson: Addressing insurers’ analytic needs

Willis Towers Watson: Addressing insurers’ analytic needs

What broad trends are you seeing in the insurance market?

Tina GwilliamForward-looking property and casualty (P&C) insurers are rethinking how they engage with customers and how they make and implement decisions, with four key areas currently under the microscope.

The first is analytic decision-making where they are looking to gather, curate and display high-quality and relevant data in a way that inform decisions and provide business insights.

The second area is agility: the ability to make highly informed decisions fast, yet governed, and to implement the decisions.

The need for efficient and effective processes is the third focus area of today’s insurers.

The fourth area is digitalisation which spans both product relevance and the delivery of products via simple and accessible digital transactions with customers as well as business partners.

What do these trends mean for actuaries, data scientists and analytic teams?

These trends mean that silos are disappearing or already gone. We are seeing analytic teams that have traditionally supported different functions (i.e., pricing, underwriting, reserving, and capital modelling) coalescing into more integrated units where the coordinated interaction creates significant efficiency and strategy execution.

Therefore, analytic teams are going to be driving business decisions, rather than advising. This change is happening now in specific markets with leading insurers. It will take longer to happen in other markets where there is less perceived value or more cautious carriers.

Understanding each organisation’s desired state and timeframe for achieving their milestones is vital to developing the best path to success. Many companies have struggled with legacy systems and tried to come up with integrated solutions. Does that mean eliminating all legacy systems and starting again? Unlikely.

Our software delivers analytic and decision-support solutions focused on the ability to price, underwrite and manage portfolios, as well as understanding the financial risks associated with the business. 

Why should insurers use Willis Towers Watson’s technology solutions?

Forward-thinking insurers need to do things more often, at a more granular level; and when they do that, they need tools for automation and may need auto-interpretation and machine learning technology.

Willis Towers Watson’s portfolio of products address analytic needs across that spectrum of pricing, underwriting, reserving and capital management. In addition to the functional capabilities, they also support agility and efficiency through business process management (BPM) or robotics process automation (RPA).

Through active portfolio management, our products help insurers have a clearer view of financial impacts now and into the future, allowing them to make better, more informed, decisions.

One of the strongest elements of our proposition is the world-class consulting combined with the technology.

What makes us different from a standard technology company that has to guess and fill in the blanks from an insurance perspective or bring in outside consultants, is the fact that we use our tools to deliver on our consulting engagements and, therefore, we understand the business of insurance as well as how best to deploy the technology. 

How has Willis Towers Watson been investing in its ResQ tool, and what more is to come?

Since IFRS 17 is one of the most pressing client needs globally, we have invested heavily in IFRS 17 reporting capabilities and delivered ResQ Financial Reporter, which is our solution for property and casualty insurers.

It’s an out-of-the box approach that takes the complexity out of IFRS 17. We have partnered with a number of large insurers to ensure we develop solutions that meet clients’ needs. In our latest release this June, we’ve delivered functionality which connects the results of the IFRS 17 balances closer to the individual ledgers. We are creating a process that bridges the gap between our software solution and customised ledger structures.

We also continue to deliver features for our large, global user base of reserving practitioners. In our latest release, we introduced a data export feature that offers an easy drop and drag tool to export data from ResQ.

We will continue investing in ResQ, including ResQ Financial Reporter, to ensure it delivers as clients’ needs evolve. Through regular client discussions, we understand how reserving is changing from a focus on establishing regulatory reserves, to a focus on identifying insights to drive business decisions.