Disruption became the new norm in 2011, purports a new report on factors driving auto collision repair and total loss costs called “Crash Course 2012.” Released by CCC Information Services, a provider of automobile claims information and processing services, the report describes, in a macro view, disruptive innovation with four pillars: making the complicated simple, making the expensive affordable, transforming what already exists, and creating what doesn’t.
The claims management consultancy reports that the major IT trends for insurance companies will look to for disruption in 2012 are big data, mobile, social and the cloud.
Big data analytics can speed up the claims process, according to the report, by offering real-time claim information, industry data, vehicle history and carrier-specific rules to determine whether damages incurred surpass the loss threshold. From the first notice of loss, the capability to assess the vehicle and have it routed appropriately is possible, reducing overall cycle time.
Mobile also contributes to this efficiency. Citing a Travelers (https://www.travelers.com/) study of 16 months worth of claims filed over a mobile device, the report states that three times as many claims reports submitted using a mobile device were received during the first four months of 2011 than the same period in 2010. Of those, 70 percent of these claims were for personal auto insurance.
The report notes that claims processes are coming under increasing scrutiny as the market becomes consumer-centric and automotive claims frequency experiences a disruption in its historic pattern of flat-to-declining frequency and severity—driven largely by the significant catastrophe and storm activity throughout the world.
Using social media and other means of data collection – such as mobile usage and bill payment behavior – insurers can further anticipate customer needs and segment, and thereby customize outreach to, potential consumers. The report added that customized approaches will help offset financially cautious consumers in this struggling economy.
Despite environmental and economic factors, said the report, a couple broader trends are helping auto insurers. First, the uptick in new car sales in 2010 and 2011 contributed to the overall insurance industry’s growth in private passenger auto premiums. Also noted: 2011 saw a drop-off in claim and fatality frequency for auto insurers thanks to decreasing frequency of auto travel and distances being traveled.
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