Archive for the ‘Insurance’ Category

Nice article on predictive analytics in insurance

Sunday, January 8th, 2012

Nice article on predictive analytics in insurance

James Taylor writes:

Patrick Sugent wrote a nice article on A Predictive Analytics Arsenal in claims magazine recently. The article is worth a read and, if this is a topic that interests you check out our white paper on next generation claims systems or the series of blog posts on decision management in insurance that I wrote after I did a webinar with Deb Smallwood (an insurance industry expert quoted in the article).

The article is nice but I thought the white paper was better. Particularly this passage:

Next generation claims systems with Decision Management focus on the decisions in the claims process. These decisions are managed as reusable assets and made widely available to all channels, processes and systems via Decision Services. A decision-centric approach enables claims feedback and experience to be integrated into the whole product life cycle and brings the company’s know-how and expertise to bear at every step in the claims process.

At the heart of this new mindset is an approach for replacing decision points with Decision Services and improving business performance by identifying the key decisions that drive value in the business and improving on those decisions by leveraging a company’s expertise, data and existing systems.

Insurers are adopting Decision Management to build next generation claims systems that improve claims processes.

In topic map lingo, “next generation claims systems” are going to treat decisions as subjects that can be identified and re-used to improve the process.

Decisions are made everyday in claims processing but, current systems don’t identify them as subjects and so re-use simply isn’t possible.

True enough the proposal in the white paper does not allow for merging of decisions identified by others, but that doesn’t look like a requirement in their case. They need to be able to identify decisions they make and feed them back into their systems.

The other thing I liked about the white paper was the recognition that hard coding decision rules by IT is a bad idea. (full stop) You can take that one to the bank.

Of course, remember what James says about changes:

Most policies and regulations are written up as requirements and then hard-coded after waiting in the IT queue, making changes slow and costly.

But he omits that hard-coding empowers IT because any changes have to come to IT for implementation.

Making changes possible by someone other than IT, will empower that someone else and diminish IT.

Who knows what and when do they get to know it is a question of power.

Topic maps and other means of documentation/disclosure, have the potential to shift balances of power in an organization.

May as well say that up front so we can start identifying the players, who will cooperate, who will resist. And experimenting with what might work as incentives to promote cooperation. Which can be measured just like you measure other processes in a business.