In my last post I talked about making infrastructure decisions and choosing cloud computing providers. These steps, which I see as a necessity for high performing life insurance and annuity carriers, are significant investments. How can forward-thinking carriers maximize their ROI?

The data supply chain

Carriers today already know the importance of data—it’s central to the business and a key driver to the implementation of big-data tools and analytics. Modern data management thinking suggests that data can be treated as a product in a supply chain: most valuable when it is highly portable, with good structure and high velocity access. While this is not an easy mental transition to make, especially at larger scale, it is the baseline that carriers must meet to be competitive today.

High performance data use

Higher performance in data use, and greater ROI, comes from acting to increase the mobility of data. Harvesting data from multiple sources, combining it with other imported or created data, and moving it through the supply chain can give new value and strategic insights. Carriers whose technology investments include database management and creating federated data will be leaders in technology ROI.

Analytics are the next step in creating value: finding structure and insights in the vast fields of data already owned by the insurer, harvested from third parties, or created through new technology. Investing here is investing in both decision-making and value creation.

Communicating with the business is the final key to return on technology investment: data visualization tools give non-technical business users easier access to complex analytics and data discovery, driving value through all areas of the business.

Put information into circulation

With thoughtful investment in technology, high performing carriers can bring wide arrays of data into their supply chain, add value to that data as it moves through the chain, and then leverage live analytics and data visualization to present the information to their staff, agents and customers. Investing in data mobility and intelligent analytics can create a range of opportunities for value, in expanded sales, improved brand loyalty, reduced expenses, and new possibilities not yet imagined.

Carriers who plan to maximize their ROI for technology are already improving data mobility and analytics. To learn more, download the report: Accenture Technology Vision for 2014.

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