What does it take to be a high performance insurer? (6 of 6)

This is the last in a series of posts discussing the Accenture High Performance Insurer study. In this post, I will discuss one more attribute that insurers must develop: active risk management. I will also make recommendations for how insurers can use this information to achieve high performance.

Active risk management

The recent economic situation has dispelled any myths that effective risk management is anything less than crucial. Risk management extends to the entire enterprise, including active mangement of underwriting risk, investment exposure, enterprise risk, threats to customer privacy and control of financial flows.

Risk management includes keen understanding of the risk, plus active, effective steps that control and mitigate for risk.

Putting the pieces together

Over the course of this six-part series, I have discussed five challenges facing insurers, as well as five key attributes that will help insurers address those challenges. These attributes require extensive work to develop and implement, but are critical if insurers are to achieve high performance.

Accenture’s research found successful insurers must:

  • Achieve excellence in two of the five key attributes.
  • Manage the other three attributes to a satisfactory level.
  • Have the ability to objectively re-evaluate the enterprise: its products, processes, skills and infrastructure.
  • Be willing to modify or transform the enterprise when the market requires it.

How will your business achieve these objectives?


Download the Accenture High Performance Insurer study.

Catch up on previous posts in this series:

Michael Costonis

About Michael Costonis

Michael Costonis is executive director of Accenture’s Insurance practice for North America. He is responsible for setting the overall vision and strategy for the practice, as well as pursuing new client relationships.

Costonis has twenty years experience developing, managing and deploying large scale technology systems, business processes, and strategies for some of the world’s leading insurers, including property & casualty, life, and multi-line insurance companies. In his career with Accenture, he has worked with more than 50 leading insurance clients in 14 countries around the world.

In addition to his role as North America industry executive director, Costonis is the lead for Accenture’s global claims services. In that role, he oversees claims strategies, assets, capabilities, and sales development. He also has led Accenture’s Insurance Solutions practice in North America, where he was responsible for driving growth for Accenture’s asset-based business in Insurance, including claims, underwriting, and policy administration.

Costonis has authored several articles in leading insurance trade publications, and has been quoted in The New York Times, Bloomberg News, Reuters News, Best’s Review, Insurance & Technology, InformationWeek, National Underwriter, Technology Decisions, and the Philadelphia Inquirer. He has spoken at several leading industry conferences in the U.S. and internationally.

Costonis received a bachelor’s degree in political science from Swarthmore College (Swarthmore, PA). He is based in Philadelphia.


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