A catalyst for finance transformation

May 13, 2022 Arslan Saadat

This piece was developed in partnership with Optimus SBR and Valani Global.


The insurance industry is in a period of transition due to the changes in consumer expectations, exposure to climate, health, and economic events, regulatory pressures, and shifting market conditions.

A growing number of companies have seen significant returns when combining transformation objectives with pressing business priorities, such as the regulatory adoption of IFRS 17.  Successful organizations are balancing their capabilities and capacity to take a measured approach to transformation by applying strategic elements of digitalization, automation, and prediction to the transformation agenda.  Armed with the right tools and information, the office of the CFO and the finance function will continue to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of the insurance landscape. 

Following the LDTI explanatory series, this article provides best practices in launching a successful financial transformation program that harnesses digitization, automation, and prediction through platforms, such as Vena and Microsoft Azure, and how to achieve financial transformation through a measured approach.


Understanding the current state


The insurance industry is a challenging environment within which planning and forecasting become tricky due to the complexity and the many different processes involved in an organization amid rapidly shifting market conditions.


Today’s customers are savvier and more technology-literate than in the past. They are accustomed to using multiple channels to engage with a company and expect digital and accessible solutions across the board.


On the other hand, the frequency and severity of natural catastrophes have increased lately leading to evolving regulatory requirements that businesses need to promptly navigate and comply with, such as the recent global pandemic.


All this coupled with the typical planning technology challenges that face insurers makes for a tough planning environment, but not an impossible one to overcome. With a solid understanding of the current state, the available solutions, your business needs, and the way to strategize for better efficiency optimization, it becomes feasible to comply and thrive through the entire LDTI transformative implementation.  



Financial planning technology is key


The value in enabling financial planning technology is the automation and integration gained through the implementation. Taking the manual steps out of your process speeds it up by making it more efficient and removes the need to perform time-consuming validations. 


Having a balance of pre-built industry-specific models with the ability to augment with bespoke models expedites time to value by allowing you to focus on what makes your organization unique. 


When selecting the best-fit planning technology for your organization, the following capabilities, illustrated in the graph below, should be considered:



Considering the capabilities of the aspired planning technology that suit your business needs, a scalable cloud technology shapes the foundational base of the funnel, and most financial planning technologies have already migrated to the Cloud.  Yet, it should be noted that the ones born in the Cloud are the most scalable and optimized for this kind of deployment.  Those who have migrated on-premises technologies to cloud often need a few generations before they get it right.


Also, when considering your financial planning technology, predictive planning should matter as it supports the continual evolution of your strategy. It leverages machine learning to take full advantage of internal/external datasets for richer business insights.


The predictive planning process works best when a balance of revenue and expense models are leveraged to tie the overall forecasting model together for your organization.



The predictive planning process can help answer key questions on the minds of insurers including:

  • Project net premiums written for each insurance product.
  • Project loss claims by loss level.
  • Understand projected plan member increases and decreases.
  • Understand required staffing levels and expense levels.
  • Identify market and growth opportunities.


A proven recommendation


When navigating the financial planning technology space, Vena is by far the leader in its offering. The Vena platform uniquely combines the data collection and management capabilities of the cloud with the user experience comfort and familiarity of those accustomed to using Excel. 


In addition, Vena provides a model specific for the insurance community as a baseline starting point for the accelerated implementation of the platform.  It has a proven track record in connecting the dots for insurers while enabling the flexibility the office of finance needs to move the organization forward.



Helping you optimize


In working with a number of insurers to advance their planning processes, we have established a predictive planning accelerator on the Vena and Microsoft Azure platforms that accelerates the path to LDTI compliance while advancing an insurer’s planning capability.  

We would be pleased to showcase a demo of the predictive planning accelerator and how it can support the LDTI journey.


How BDO can help


BDO, Optimus, and Valani have come together to establish accelerators for the LDTI journey.  Our accelerators do not only meet the compliance needs of LDTI, but also advance an insurer forward in the areas of financial transformation, operations modernization, and data innovation.


Talk to us today. For more information, contact:

Daryl Senick, Partner, National Industry Leader, Insurance

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