Back in the days of classical economists such as Adam Smith and classical engineers like Charles Babbage, there was a keen sense of the value in a division of labour—workers having their own specific tasks and roles as a means to enhance productivity (for example, craftsmen not being expected to do the same things as lesser paid, unskilled workers). In some ways this division still exists in many businesses, with IT being seen as a separate function and skill, often operating independently to the rest of the organization. But I think a subtle shift is taking place. Business users are now more IT-literate than ever before. As a result, there is a blurring of the lines between what is being handled by the business and by IT. Indeed, many IT departments are being freed up from some technology support functions, which gives them more time and energy to focus on how they can promote the strategic goals of the business. In a recent survey among 71 senior insurance executives earlier this year, our respondents pinpointed the importance of techniques such as change management (receiving investment from 71 percent of respondents) and diversification (considered extremely or very important by 75 percent of respondents) in three years’ time.
Successful businesses do not stand still; they collaborate across their organisations, drawing on the key strengths internally, within IT and the business, and externally, with customers, brokers, suppliers and other interested parties. Here is where the Accenture Duck Creek Suite can help. Our technology platform is able to integrate with the insurance supply chain and can be configured to improve communications—in turn helping to drive customer satisfaction. We believe running effective insurance businesses is about far more than a software implementation. We aim to team with our clients, bringing appropriate skills and backup to help insurers to stay connected and drive better outcomes.