Unlocking the Power of Data with Power Platform Analytics

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The majority of firms now rely heavily on data as a vital resource for generating savings, enhancing efficiencies, and assuring longevity. The usage of data has not altered for the insurance industry, despite the fact that more data and more types of data are becoming available. Data is an essential component of how businesses work.

The management of analytical tools is also stuck in the past; firms employ large engineering teams to wrangle analytical insights, but these tools nevertheless remain removed from the front lines where they are most needed and important. At year’s end, firms usually invest heavily in analytical solutions to manage ad hoc data studies that are rapidly forgotten after the yearly renewal process is complete.

Insightful data is all too frequently used improperly or not at all. And other, really potent data sources are disregarded. According to Clarke, “the industry focuses more on property data than casualty data and frequently overlooks data that defines intangible assets like reputation and IP.” He says that missing these intangible components is problematic since the insurable world is changing as a result of macrotrends like the transition from PAYE to gig labor, remote working because of the pandemic, and autonomous vehicles.

Clarke suggests that, rather than treating data and analytical tools as resources to be leveraged occasionally and only by back-office experts, both should be available to and used by everyone in the organisation. The insurance industry runs on knowledge, so every insurance worker should have access to informative data and easy-to-use analytical tools.

This is the mission of Guidewire, says Clarke. “We want to turn every system of record into a system of insight. We are embedding data and analytical insights into core system workflows so everyone has instant access to the information and can subsequently make smarter decisions that improve business outcomes. What we deliver is like really, really advanced plumbing for insurers, brokers and reinsurers.”

Data should be thought of like a strategic adviser, argues Clarke. “Insurance companies need to think carefully about what they’re gathering data for – and why they use it,” he says. Of course, he recognises that this is easier said than done. Data is a capital-intensive industry if not done right, and the barrier to entry is high. “Legacy core systems and infrastructures aren’t set up to leverage real-time data from disparate sources,” says Clarke.

But Guidewire’s data and analytical tools can help. The company facilitates and administers billions of transactions each year in the US alone – all of which can be infused with analytical insights to improve outcomes. “We have a cloud-native insurance platform that is upgraded continuously and features integrated core systems, data and analytics, and digital capabilities,” says Sumeet Johar, vice president of analytical advisory at Guidewire. “Our platform allows insurers to think about how to unlock the reams of data that are generated, instead of letting it sit in a data warehouse somewhere, unharnessed and unanalysed. Take usage-based vehicle insurance: companies can take electronic data feeds from cars that inform insurers about drivers’ driving behavior – and therefore more accurately price that customer – but they can only do this if that data is available and actionable in the company’s core system of record.

“Our system of insight allows data and analytical outputs to be at the fingertips of claims adjusters and underwriters, rather than locked away in the back office,” says Johar. “It allows underwriters to make decisions based on a breadth of real-time data and analytical assessments without opening another screen or leaving their desktop.”

But it’s not just insurers that benefit: it’s the industry as a whole. “What is particularly exciting at the minute, is the realization that others in the industry, like brokers and reinsurers, want to join us on the journey of transforming systems of record to systems of insight as they transform their own revenue streams,” says Johar.

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