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Insurance companies need more effective data governance

Insurance firms frequently have vast amounts of information that they need to successfully run their businesses, but many of them could benefit from having better data governance, stated panelists at the 2013 Insurance Data Management Association Conference.

These companies have been collecting significant troves of information on matters including people’s driving records and the address of homeowners, according to Data Informed. Lisa O’Rourke, who works for Amica Mutual Insurance Co. as data management section manager, said that while her company has engaged in this exact practice, they never referred to having this much information as big data.

However, insurance firms know now how important data governance is, the media outlet reported. In the current environment, these companies must be able to harness their information to inform better decision-making across the entire organization. While this key data was frequently siloed in different business segments and departments, insurance firms must work to change this fractured nature.

Insurers are not alone in working toward better data governance, as many buy-side firms are in the exact same boat. While the concept of having the proper policies and procedures for information is not a new one, many firms are only now catching up and using it.

One major benefit of proper data governance is that it frequently bolsters data integrity. Having information that is accurate, error-free and not redundant is crucial for buy-side firms, as they rely on having high-quality data to make effective decisions.

In addition, insurance firms with higher data integrity can produce several benefits with customers, Data Informed reported. It might lower the incidence of duplicate mailings and returned emails, reduce the need to ask customers for information when these details have already been collected and help personalize customer service.

Data governance initiatives
Implementing data governance initiatives can also reduce costs and strengthen operations, Sunil Soares, founder and managing partner of consultancy Information Asset LLC, said at the IDMA conference, according to the news source. By adopting the right set of information policies and procedures, an insurance firm can make compliance with regulatory regimes more certain and get more accurate data from claims adjusters and agent networks.

Insurance firms that want to increase the efficacy of a data governance initiative might consider getting an in-depth assessment from a services provider. By doing so, they can potentially identify crucial bottlenecks that would otherwise hinder successful efforts to have the right rules for their important information.

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