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Getting Started with Data Analytics – 6 Steps to Success for Insurers

Posted on September 20, 2016 by Alyssa Koske in Digital Insurer

Analytics dashboard

Why is big data such a big deal for the insurance industry?

Why does Vertafore keep trying to turn your attention towards examples of how other insurers are using big data analytics to generate breakthrough results for their business?

You might even be asking yourself why we’d write about the importance of tackling big data on our partner’s websites.

The answer is simple: Those who embrace big data analytics have a competitive advantage.

Joyce Sigler, Vice President of the Jones & Wenner Ins. Agency, Inc., stated in her recent guest post that “while we, as agencies, can’t determine the timing for adoption of big data externally, we can have our eyes wide open to our processes and take charge of data changes.”

Breaking up with old business processes can be hard to do.

But getting started with big data analytics? Well, that can be surprisingly easy.

Use the six steps below as jumping off points in a group discussion with IT or other important key stakeholders in your organization to determine what kind of impact investing in analytics tools could have on your business.

Pilot solving a small problem with real business value

Keep your first project small to increase your likelihood of success and avoid becoming overwhelmed. To help build support across your organization, focus on solving a problem that will provide real business value. Choosing the problem and gathering the data to solve it will highlight the skill, collaboration, and data gaps your organization needs to fill in order to succeed on a larger scale.

If you need some inspiration, take a look at 3 ways big data analytics are driving growth and innovation in insurance.

Start collecting data

Organizations abound with data. It fills up our inboxes and servers, it litters our desktops. The process of understanding your data begins the minute you start collecting it. Viewing everything as data will help you develop the discriminating eye you’ll need later in the process, when you start to apply analytics to benefit your business.

Organize your data logically and consistently

There is no one right way to organize your data. Ultimately, whatever approach you adopt has to work for your organization. Once you’ve determined the most logical approach for the business, stick with it – even the most basic organizational plan can be adjusted later if you’re consistent in how you record data.

Don’t throw data away!

While this may seem obvious, you’d be surprised how often data is accidentally discarded in the form of electronic assets, such as email and chat transcripts, or physical asset, such as faxes and forms. For now, your best bet is to err on the side of inclusion.

Consider cloud storage

Big data will keep getting bigger. Even if you work with a small set of data you’ll need to store it somewhere safe that can grow when your need do. You have two choices – either develop a robust data management and backup solution, or do what Apple, eBay, and Amazon does: put it in the cloud.

Make a data governance plan

Make plan for how you’re going to safeguard your data. In larger organizations this may mean establishing a governing body and a comprehensive set of procedures. In a smaller organizations, though, it can be as simple as defining how you’ll protect your data from unauthorized access and accidental deletion.

Next steps

If you feel like we’re just scratching the surface, we are. Try searching the website for more articles about the impact big data analytics are having on the insurance industry, or head over to our Data Analytics resource center.  

I’d also recommend taking a look at Joyce Sigler’s article titled: 9 Key Questions Insurance Agents Need to Ask Themselves About Big Data

The next steps, listed out in more detail, can be found in our free e-book moving Your Business Forward with Data Analytics: Strategies and solutions to help companies of all sizes derive big value from big data

For those looking to take the final step, get in touch with our team using the “Contact Vertafore” button at the bottom of the page to find out how you can starting using analytics to your advantage.

alyssa koske headshot

Alyssa Koske
With over 10 years of experience at Vertafore Mrs. Koske is committed to learning more about your agency, helping you get the most out of your Vertafore products, and continuing to be a partner that enables you to meet your business goals.




Ready to take the next step?

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