As barriers drop, drones set to soar

As barriers drop, drones set to soar

As barriers drop, drones set to soar As barriers against the use of drone technology continue to be overcome, one industry leader believes the technology is set to have a big impact on the insurance industry

Warren Hutcheon, CEO of the Australian branch of international insurer Ansvar Insurance, told Insurance Business that the recent decision by the business to use drones highlights the importance the technology has on the industry.

“Risk management innovation that supports customers in our core specialty sectors is a key part of Ansvar’s value proposition,” Hutcheon said.

“The use of drones was first considered some 12 months ago, so it has been a long journey assessing the potential, along with the challenges and risks of insourcing drone operating capability. For us the business case stacks up due to the specialty nature of our customer base and the range of services we provide to them.”

Hutcheon noted that the use of drone technology will only increase across the industry as barrier to use continue to be navigated.

“Drones are already impacting the industry from a post-loss perspective, particularly following catastrophic events,” Hutcheon said.

“A growing number of insurers and loss adjusting firms are seeing the benefits for utilising drones to understand the significance of events and resultant damage. From a risk management perspective, the use of drones will become more common, but predominantly for specialty risks in the first instance. 

“There are a number of barriers to be able operate drones commercially, but over time I believe there will be greater use across the value chain within the insurance industry. An outsourced model may be more feasible for some organisations.”

Drones will not be the only section of emerging technology to impact the industry as Hutcheon said that it is imperative for insurance businesses to stay ahead of the curve wherever possible.

“It’s extremely important that the industry keep on top of all potential technology developments,” Hutcheon continued.

“Digital disruption is happening now and at a significant rate. As an industry we need to be relevant and stay relevant.”

Whether drones are the right avenue for every insurance business remains to be seen but Hutcheon said that the impact of emerging technologies cannot be overlooked. 

“All emerging technologies need to be assessed by the industry,” Hutcheon said.

“For personal lines insurers, understanding telematics and other monitoring technologies is important right now. Wearables are being utilised by health and life insurance companies.

“Drones can be effective for certain aspects of the insurance value chain, it depends on your segmentation strategy and the range of services you are looking to provide.”


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