My colleagues and I recently had the opportunity to present some of the 2015 Novarica Impact Awards to worthy winners. The goal of the Impact Award is a straightforward but powerful one: recognize those insurance technologists (and their business colleagues) who have made a qualitative and quantitative impact at their company.
For 2015, just a handful of winners were selected from nearly forty submissions. The winners ran the gamut across the insurance spectrum in terms of size, geography, and business spread. However, they all shared a few things in common:
- Clear articulation of expected business value
- Consistent executive sponsorship
- Consistent and frequent communication during the project, with an emphasis on newer software development methodologies like AGILE
- Close coordination with vendors
- Clear use of success metrics
The common denominator between all these elements was something that has proven difficult for IT groups historically: being collaborative and communicative partners with the business and with any other key stakeholders. Each of the 2015 winners did this exceedingly well, and in the process built an effective and sustainable model for future business technology efforts. That’s important stuff.
When I had the pleasure or presenting two of these awards recently, both of the award winners I visited spoke more about the impact and value their efforts brought to their respective companies than they did about any particular technologies or solutions.
Me presenting an Impact Award to Fidelity and Guarantee Life for launching their e-app
Me presenting an Impact Award to HCC for launching their new product line and portal
My colleague Chuck Ruzicka recently visited Ameritas to present an award for the company’s use of a project execution framework. There, the drive for business models was also apparent. As CIO Richard Widenbeck said, “Ameritas understands the value of executing projects and making well informed decisions. By creating and maturing this process foundation, we believe we can drive value-based outcomes, align risk and investment levels, and improve execution excellence in a way that creates sustainable advantage. We are thrilled to receive this award.”
Chuck Ruzicka presenting an Impact Award at Ameritas
My colleague Robert McIsaac also had a chance to present an award at Tokio Marine North America for their deployment of analytics to improve agent performance management.
The Tokio Marine Impact Award Presentation
In all the award-winning organizations that we have visited so far, the emphasis on creating an effective model for all business technology efforts has been clearly evident. This should be the focus of all carriers in 2016. If there’s a project at your company that deserves recognition, there’s still time to submit information for a 2016 Impact Award.