IBM has partnered with MetLife to develop a new platform for the global insurance industry on the IBM Cloud, designed to improve both the process and economics for product development, as well as enhancing underwriting and benefits delivery.
The new, industry-first platform aims to assist insurers expansion into new products and to engage and secure new customers, via the use of cognitive computing, data analytics and integration, along side increased security capabilities.
Senior Vice President of IBM Industry Platforms, Bridget van Kralingen, commented; “Our Industry Platforms are designed in collaboration with our clients and partners and intended to dramatically improve traditional business models using deep industry expertise and advanced technologies such as AI, cloud and blockchain.
“In the case of insurance, carriers will be able to inject greater innovation and speed into their operating models, and consumers will experience a broader range of products tailored to their individual needs.”
IBM states that it works with 95% of the planet’s top insurance companies, and by utilising this experience in combination with the expertise, insight and knowledge provided by MetLife, the platform should provide carriers with the ability to improve the overall customer experience and development of new products.
Furthermore, the platform will reduce IT infrastructure and maintenance expenses for carriers, while helping players respond faster to market changes.
Marty Lippert, MetLife Executive Vice President and Head of Global Technology and Operations, said; “The new direction provides us with the opportunity to introduce to the market a unique business model unlike any other. The strategy represents innovation in our approach to growth and is a testament to the reality that every company needs to become a technology company in order to survive.
“It brings together the best of MetLife’s insurance expertise and capabilities with leading IBM technology into a single, highly scalable, low cost insurance industry solution.”
MetLife will be the first to use the new solution. Starting with its small business clients, MetLife will be able to tailor and scale its benefits offering, and customers and brokers will have the ability to access a wider set of affordable group benefits, explains IBM.
MetLife’s President of U.S. Business and EMEA, Michel Khalaf, said; “Small business is an attractive growth segment for MetLife. We know from speaking to many business owners and brokers that they believe employee benefits are important in attracting, retaining and engaging talent. We’re excited this platform will give our customers greater access to the benefits they need through a simpler, affordable experience.”
IBM cites data from rating agency A.M. Best, which puts the size of the U.S. group benefits market at roughly $140 billion in 2016.
Majesco, a provider of insurance technology, will also participate in the platform, providing components to improve underwriting, policy admin, and also billing and claims.
Technology continues to deepen its relationship with the global insurance and reinsurance market, seeking to improve efficiency and enable more and more people with access to vital and affordable protection.