Ruhan Coetzer says digitalisation must be from the top down in insurance

29 Jun 2016

The Head of Research and Analytics, MMI Life Insurance, spoke on the topic of “A new approach to non-disclosure using digital tools“ at the Next Generation Insurance Customer 2016 conference at the Swiss Re Centre for Global Dialogue.

Click here to find out more about the event.

Read the text version of Ruhan Coetzer's interview here:

“Digitisation is everywhere. I think it's something that we cannot escape, and it's something that we're going to have to embrace. Our advisor force is an ageing intermediary force, stuck to papers, but inevitably it's coming. We're going to have to just adapt or die. Especially for the large insurance companies, most of them still being analog, paper based. There’s a long journey that we have to go in order to get this digitisation right, but I think it's really important that we do.

Non-disclosure is something that we've been grappling with for a long time, but we need to start thinking differently about non-disclosure. Specifically, understanding the root causes of it. It being essentially a human problem, human behaviour problem, and understanding human behaviour. That's why I believe we haven't eradicated it, because we haven't understood the core issues. It needs to be a top down approach. I don't think it helps for you to do some pockets of digital innovation. It needs to be a strategy that comes from the top to say that we're going to digitise all of our interaction processes with our clients, and that's really where I think we failed is we tried to do this from a bottom up approach.

There needs to be a change in leadership. The organisational structure, the strategy rather, needs to be one of digitalisation an digital enablement, because in the past it's been a big project, it's been a sideline thing, some digital officer that just does their own thing. Don't really have the buy in from a strategic point of view, and I think that's got to change dramatically.”