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Love In The Time Of Covid-19!

These are exceptional times. We don’t know quite how long the extraordinary measures in response to Covid-19 will last, but it’s safe to assume that they will shape the remainder of the year one way or another. Right now nothing seems quite normal any more as the country locks itself down. 

As nobody in InsurTechNZ is in it for the money, it’s fair to describe it as a labour of love. So, when the InsurTechNZ Working Group met last week to discuss how it might adapt to the current state we started by reflecting on what it is we love and talked in the context of our core purpose. 

InsurTechNZ has a mission to enable collaborative innovation in insurance to provide positive customer outcomes. We do this by enabling connections across the industry and by offering a forum to discuss how technology can provide solutions for insurance industry problems. We get passionate when we see our members surfacing industry challenges and exploring innovation and solutions.

Since our launch in late 2017 InsurTechNZ has been very successful through its series of meetups which have always been exceptionally well attended and have featured some rich content and dialogue. Although the face to face benefits of these networking events will no longer be on the menu, we will still be offering a series of content rich sessions using digital conferencing technology via FinTechNZ. 

We will distribute more detail in due course but expect to see the following topics appear shortly on the agenda via Zoom Conferencing:

  • Testing the BCP – The challenges of maintaining quality of the claims supply chain during the Covid-19 lockdown and how technology can help.
  • A discussion hosted by JAVLN and with support of the FMA on solutions available in the advisor/ broker space in an environment of uncertainty and regulatory change. 

In addition, InsurTechNZ is establishing a private LinkedIn group for all matters Insurtech/ Insurance. We invite all members and their staff to join and participate.

For the longer term we’ll of course monitor the situation with Covid-19 and will revert to our regular InsurTechConnect events as soon as restrictions are removed and this seems sensible.

Hot Topics

We welcome all FinTechNZ members to use our Zoom Conferencing capability to set up topics for presentation and discussion, please let us know if this is of interest. While we have some resource limitations we can probably also assist with Webinar solutions. From what we have seen the best format appears to be during normal business hours – and a short format of mixed presentations/panel. The good thing is that we can record webinar sessions for later viewing and distribution – all good for remote working. 

In particular we’d love to invite members to explore the following topics which we see trending:

  1. Effective customer relationship management in a world of lockdown/isolation. 
  2. IT security/ cyber – current conditions and extensive remote working conditions are making this a hot topic. Watch this space also for practical advice and support for this topic from Delta Insurance and partners who are preparing something for distribution.
  3. Effective tools and strategies/ tips for teams and partners to collaborate while working from home/remotely
  4. What are the challenges and practical advice for Insurtechs to bridge a slowdown? This could cover some or all of a number of facets such as investment; runway challenges; no travel to help international aspirations; distracted partners/ suppliers/ customers.
  5. What are the unique or new problems that CV-19 presents and who is working on solutions?
  6. Mental Health, vulnerable customers and caring for people – How is CV-19 affecting people and what solutions are being developed?

We want to provide our members with a forum for any subject that seems topical and interesting and that maintains engagement with the wider group at a time when we cannot physically meet!

New InsurTechNZ LinkedIn page – going social

We are in the process of setting up a new LinkedIn site for all our community. We would be delighted to see you post updates, news, blogs, events, commentary or simply community messages to keep us all engaged and enthused.

We will open this up to members and non-members alike across New Zealand and hope this will become a much bigger solution for the whole sector over time. Certainly the LinkedIn groups of our InsurTech partners overseas have very active sites and set a good example to follow.

Yes, it’s early days but please see this LinkedIn group here as the link for joining, posting and more.

If you have any suggestions please let us know.

International Update

Sadly, Coronavirus means that planned FinTech NZ and InsurTechNZ delegations to attend ITC Singapore and London TechWeek in June won’t be proceeding (with both events postponed to early next year). Needless to say, we will maintain open channels with ATEED and NZTE so that when things normalise we will be able to engage their generous and highly valuable support for New Zealand’s innovators.  

On a more positive note, there has been an interesting development in the international space with the heightened interest for connecting worldwide. All Insurtech organisations are exploring how they might enrich their member offerings and how to maintain dialogue on relevant challenges and topics in a locked-down world. InsurTechNZ is a founding member of the Global Insurtech Alliance (GITA) which has welcomed two new members in the past month so it’s a hearty welcome to Insurtech New York and Tokyo. If you would like an introduction please don’t hesitate to contact Jason or myself.

Finally, for those who have been around long enough to remember the iconic TV show Hill Street Blues, I felt that these are times in which this seems to be most appropriate – ‘let’s be careful out there’ 

Kai Dwyer and Jason Roberts
InsurTechNZ Co-Chairs

InsurTech Focused News

InsurTechNZ InsurTechNZ champions technology-enabled innovation throughout the New Zealand insurance industry. We aim to attract more talent, start-ups, and funding to the InsurTech sector in New Zealand.