It’s been a while since IE magazine talked to Andre Symes, MD of Genasys Technology UK. The innovative software company has been busy building new partnerships across the UK and beyond in the last six months or so, and despite the impact of Covid-19, there’s no stopping the growth right now.
IE; Tell us a bit more about Genasys Tech activities earlier this year.
AS; What we’ve been doing since we entered the UK is setting up pre-integration partners, that our clients can leverage. Now what we mean by that is we spend a substantial amount of time building up our API functionality, all across the value chain of the policy life cycle, from quote and buy to claims. That allows our clients to select what additional extra products or services they might like on top of that, to enhance their value proposition to the end user.
One thing that’s been great for Genasys is being part of Insurtech UK, because that’s allowed us to find the really stand-out companies active in this space. We’ve partnered with multiple companies over the last six months and each one has something unique for us. For example, we’ve worked with one anti-fraud company which has a product that looks at various data sources, so that it can look at the type of claim, the financial threshold, and the likelihood of fraud on that particular type of claim in a few seconds. It’s about setting business rules and AI-powered procedures within your claims process – not just deciding that all claims below a certain threshold can be settled automatically.
IE; Genasys have done some work with Percayso Inform, has that been on the quote side of things?
AS; Yes Percayso specialise in crunching data before a quote. On the front end side of things within the insurance sector there’s a massive battle right now to win the race on quoting just on the customer entering their name, or just a few pieces of information! Everyone wants an engine that goes faster.
The other thing that we are seeing in demand for a 360 degree viewpoint on claims data. There are companies doing a kind of reverse engineering product, so you can look at where liability actually sits after a claim is made. In say car insurance, you can use technology to look at say car A weighs this much, travelling at this speed etc. and then Car B weighs this, and the right of way according to Maps and other public data means you can assess liability to a degree.
That has a huge impact on things like PI claims, because the technology is telling you so much about the incident, even before anyone involved has made a statement. Our eco-system partner, Xtract, is way ahead of the rest when it comes to this type of technology.
The benefit of using an eco-system is that we are growing this thing every day, adding partner companies and from a client point of view you can switch something on, or off again, totally flexible.
Have a quick listen to Andre Symes talking eco-systems and building for the unknown factor here;
IE; IE has talked to a few companies and they’ve mentioned how good it is to have other partners who can offer extra value.
AS; An ever-changing market, people are always looking for something new. Most companies have got to the point where they’ve optimised their customer journey online, the big question is what’s coming down the line next? It’s interesting that a few years ago people used to ask me `what is Genasys doing on Blockchain?’ and I would reply, `what do you want to do with Blockchain?’ They didn’t know. It was a similar thing last year when data was the buzzword and everyone was going big on data analytics. But nobody predicted Covid-19 a year ago, no-one really knows what is coming next in 2021. One thing that is guaranteed however is that your customers will want to feel they’ve got extra value from insurance and that the company they’re dealing with can respond to the unforeseen. So if you can build a system that can facilitate the unknown factor, then you have really got something.
IE; So when a new trend emerges, your eco-system can spot it, like say growth in Life & healthcare?
AS; Absolutely. What’s going to be nice for the consumer is that they will get a better understanding of what their insurance actually does, what the terms and conditions mean, because of the feedback from Coronavirus. Insurers set a dangerous precedent if they start over-ruling policy wording, so there has to be more transparency. One area that will grow is cyber insurance, as more people are working from home, so many influences, devices and so on – and then there’s the IP that companies have; how is that going to be protected as we increasingly use technology at home, which is also a workplace?
IE; Do you think that technology can offer solutions to social distancing in Construction or Commercial?
AS; To an extent, but not profoundly. The big change is that for many companies your head office location no longer really matters. You can recruit based on talent, not proximity to the office. Quite scary for London based professionals in the insurance industry, but very exciting for people living elsewhere in the UK of course.
IE; Do you think that the insurance shows landscape is going to change forever after Covid-19, will some of those shows and events never return?
AS; We have seen an increase of 26% in Genasys Tech productivity during the lockdown. So there’s no doubt that it’s more efficient. Having said that we are excited about seeing colleagues again, and you realise how much you miss human contact. You miss meeting clients face-to-face too, no doubt about it. So some events and shows are too important to let go I think, BIBA is a good example. You have to be there.
IE; Are companies going to look harder for value from the events sector though, more live demos of products perhaps?
AS; Covid-19 lockdown is a harsh way of tidying up that whole shows circuit for sure. Yes, in the future, every company is going to wonder if it’s really necessary to be there, and if it’s required for you to do the social side of things in the evenings instead of going home. But there’s still a value to be had and we should see a natural progression from the events sector. The challenge is to do more than Powerpoint presentations, show something that works live, in real time. You know, you take a risk doing that, but people are bound to ask `Show me what you’ve got, convince me it works for my company.’
Whenever Genasys get up at an insurtech event we wonder if something might go wrong, but we feel that you have to do it. If you can’t make it work at a show then how’s it going to work in someone’s company?
IE; It is going to be good to see demonstrations at BIBA or other events where people can join that race to quote on just a couple of pieces of information – that’s the new Hackathon maybe; do it in ten minutes, not two days?
AS; Everyone in insurance relies on the broker at some point in the process, so there’s definitely going to be opportunities to showcase green-field products and solutions. The demand for something to be built from the ground up is there. We all love to see good ideas refined, developed and revamped.
IE; Maybe we can showcase an Instant Influencer app next year; immediate IP and reputational damage insurance with three clicks?
AS; Well maybe, but I think someone might already beat you to it before then! You know the rate that people in the industry are learning new ways of working is phenomenal right now. Every detail from policy admin, new product development, updating existing online systems and call-centres, has been transformed in the last six weeks or so – incredible.
Some sectors like Commercial, or perhaps Critical Illness are so complex that you can’t automate it all, but there’s an acceptance now that anything that can be done automatically, remotely, is the way forward. You know, the generation that’s grown up in the digital world is asking insurance brands; what can you do for us, and how can you make it easier? Because that’s what they expect from brands and insurers are no exception, they’re not immune to that process.
IE; Andre thanks and keep busy.