Now that you know how to leverage AI-related technology across the insurance value chain, it’s time to set your AIQ to work.

In my blog series on how to boost your Artificial Intelligence Quotient, I looked at different ways to apply AI along the insurance value chain across the entire enterprise. In this post, I’ll look at the role the future workforce will play in creating AI-driven companies, using insights gleaned from our  Future Workforce Survey for Insurance .

Accenture research suggests, by the year 2035, AI will grow productivity in key economies by up to 40 percent. AI offers its greatest value by augmenting the work that people do and improving the way they consume and interact with their communities. AI also presents the opportunity for business transformation by creating intelligent processes in the value chain and intelligent products and services in the market.

Humans plus machines: the future workforce

AI is set to play a major role in insurance, not only improving efficiencies but also opening up new sources of growth. The full potential of AI will be achieved when human ingenuity and intelligent machines combine to deliver more than either can do on its own.

But what are the things standing in your way to creating an agile, adaptable future workforce?

Your workforce understands the immense potential of AI

As I mentioned in the second post in this series, AI is certainly a powerful tool for increasing efficiency and accuracy. But we see it as a much more optimistic story. For us, it’s more about growth, innovation, and enabling people to perform at a higher level. Think about how it can improve the lives of customers and employees alike.

Two out of three insurance executives expect AI to result in a net gain in employment in their organizations, while the majority of employees are eager to work with AI and expect it to benefit their work, career prospects and work-life balance.

AI promises to change the way we work & live for the better.

It’s a more optimistic story than a quest for productivity at the cost of jobs. Furthermore, our research revealed that insurance executives believe that AI’s greatest benefits are not only efficiency and productivity, but also improved customer and employee experiences and the development of new sources of value and growth—with the potential to completely transform the industry.

68% of insurance executives expect AI to result in a net gain in employment in their organization.

And contrary to what many insurers believe, the majority of employees are eager to work with AI and expect it to have a beneficial impact on their work, their career prospects and their work-life balance.

But contradictions emerge as insurers ponder the role of people. They recognize reskilling the workforce is critical—but aren’t investing in it.

While executives expect AI to completely transform insurance, they report only 25% of their employees are ready to work with intelligent machines.

While they acknowledge its importance and its transformative potential, they admit their people are critical to the success of their AI initiatives, and the growing skills gap is the key factor influencing their workforce strategy, but only 4% plan to significantly increase their investment in reskilling programs over the next three years. So, there is a major disconnect in insurers’ approach to AI.

Insurers can only realize the full potential of AI when they combine human ingenuity with intelligent machines. Only then will they achieve synergies greater than the sum of what they can do on their own.

How to change? Start by transforming the workforce

To attain this level of collaboration, insurers need to transform their workforce. To do this, we believe three steps are essential:

  1. Reimagine work to better understand how machines and people can collaborate.
  2. Pivot the workforce to areas that create new forms of value.
  3. Scale up ‘new skilling’ to enable people to work with intelligent machines.

As we have seen, the majority of insurance executives believe human-machine collaboration is important if they are to achieve their strategic objectives. Since the workforce is a critical enabler of any AI strategy, insurers need to develop a workforce that is equipped and willing to work at a higher level in collaboration with intelligent machines. Insurers, in our view, cannot afford to wait until the future is clear and predictable, but need to start now.

There is a clear choice insurers need to make: Which company do they want to be? The one who has strategically leveraged intelligent technology, data and upskilled its people, or the one who has not?

Transforming the workforce to collaborate effectively with AI won’t be easy or quick, but it is essential if the potential of artificial intelligence is to be realized. The time to start is now.

Do you want to unleash trapped value within your organization? Are you ready to embrace AI and all its possibilities? to learn more or download the How to boost your AIQ report and the  Future Workforce Survey for Insurance .

 

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