Sainsbury: What are your priorities for the next 12-18 months?
Diver: Our priorities over the next 12-18 months include business intelligence; our core network upgrade; enhancing web based applications; simplifying our systems; and upgrading our desktop operation systems and virtual desktop infrastructure.
Sainsbury: What technology innovation do you think will bring the greatest benefits to insurance in the future?
Diver: I think big data and predictive tools will enhance the customer experience and enable the insurance industry to improve rating algorithms and fraud analytics.
Improved mobility devices and speed will also allow for improved customer experience and more cost effective claims handling.
Sainsbury: What do you think is the most effective approach to technology, from a customer experience point of view?
Diver: I think the use of web applications, for both business-to-business and business-to-customer initiatives is highly effective.
Sainsbury: What role do you see mobile applications having with regards to customer engagement within the insurance industry?
Diver: This is evolving but insurance, unlike banking, is not heavily transactional. Is a customer likely to download an application that they may use once a year, if at all? There are applications available, especially with regard to claims, but the same logic applies in terms of usage. Customers are more likely at this stage to access standard browser based services via their mobile devices.
The customer experience with claims handling will improve with newer technologies. Tablet devices will enable improved efficiencies and experiences for customers, suppliers and insurers.
Sainsbury: What long-term value does Vero see for data analytics solutions in New Zealand?
Diver: The big opportunities are in more sophisticated risk analysis and rating. There are a myriad of opportunities in this space.
Sainsbury: What value do you see in enabling a highly-mobile and work from home workforce?
Diver: Working from home is becoming more and more viable as the technology to enable it matures. It offers reduced real estate footprints and a more flexible approach to resourcing.
We see significant value in building a highly-mobile workforce for certain roles within our organisation. Once again this will enable a reduced real estate footprint and allow a better and more efficient customer experience.
Sainsbury: What technology do you use outside of work?
Diver: I use a personal digital assistant, a tablet and a laptop.
Sainsbury: How do you foster a culture of innovation within your team?
Diver: We run specific innovation events, allowing a day and a half where staff can work on what they are passionate about – with the aim of delivering something to showcase by the end of that period.
We have set up ‘skunkworks’ projects that allow for innovative work methods, use of external and internal staff outside normal hours, and some cut down governance to get to proof of concept level for larger pieces of work. If the project looks viable at the proof of concept stage, we then deliver the final product through normal project management methodologies.
Sainsbury: If you weren’t working in financial services and technology, what would you be doing?
Diver: I have been in financial services all my working life so I’m not entirely sure. Outside of work I am heavily involved in sport both as a player and administrator so maybe something in that field.
Sainsbury: Every IT leader, particularly at your level, has a legacy they wish to be remembered for. What is yours?
Diver: When I move on I want to leave something behind that is better than it was when I was appointed.