The rise of augmented intelligence
In 2019 we predict that we’ll see more emphasis being placed on AI
– with the ‘A’ representing ‘augmented’, rather than ‘artificial’. There is currently a level of mistrust among consumers and business users about ‘artificial’ intelligence, perhaps stemming from a lack of clarity as to how data is used in decision making.
For example, when a consumer makes a claim, Artificial Intelligence could be used to derive the claims reserve – a fair and valid use of the technology, but one that can make insurance businesses nervous given the significant impact that reserving can have on business performance.
One way of overcoming this reticence would be for insurers to use Artificial Intelligence to calculate the reserve; but rather than apply that directly, share it with claims handlers to allow them to choose whether or not to use it. In this subtler way, the technology can ‘augment’ the claims process.
The principle of creating greater transparency when applying newer technological processes means insurers can help instil trust back into the industry whilst retaining the valuable personal touches necessary to delivery excellent customer service.
I expect to see more and more businesses using Augmented Intelligence in this way to support business functions and encourage human interactions, rather than simply replacing them.
The evolving role of the CIO
Particularly relevant to the financial services industries, there is a gathering trend towards the CIO taking on responsibilities that historically resided with an operations director.
In businesses driven and facilitated by technology, the CIO is the executive most likely to have the breadth of knowledge, experience and understanding to be able to deliver the changes necessary for digital business models and to ready the business for the predicted pace of change.
The CIO of the future may very well see their key objectives becoming much less about creating or delivering technological systems, and much more about ensuring the application of technology, change and data across all business processes – including broking, fraud and underwriting – are maximising the value from the company’s people assets as well as its technology and data ones.