by Angus MacCaull
The inaugural Symposium Atlantic took place this April at the Atlantica Hotel in Halifax. It was organized by the CIP Society, which has 18,000 members across Canada (including many of our own brokers). The full day of detailed presentations and discussions had the largest registration of any of the recent CIP Symposiums across the country. It was a great way to wrap up Nova Scotia Insurance Broker Month.
We attended two breakout sessions. The Sharing Economy: Insurance Repercussions of Our Changing Landscape gave an excellent macro picture of evolving behaviours that could have a big impact on our industry. Platforms like Uber and Airbnb are challenging legacy models for services such as transportation and accommodation. Peer to peer networks create enormous trust among strangers based on reviews. New insurance products are needed to cover the risks of these new kinds of relationships.
The second session, Technology in Insurance Investigations and Adjusting, highlighted cutting-edge imaging tools available for claims. Compact cameras with features like focus stacking, thermal imaging, and 3D modelling now provide incredible images. And many of them can be mounted on drones.
During lunch, Pat Van Bakel, CEO of Crawford & Company, invited everyone to consider their decision making process. With so many aspects of our industry in flux, companies need to understand where to put their focus and resources. He noted that insurtech will be mainstream within a couple of years.
Van Bakel also encouraged us all to be vocal. “With increased complexity comes increased onus on professionals to explain and share their value,” he said.
The expert panel in the afternoon included representatives from two of our company partners. Ryan Spinner, Head of Innovation at Aviva Canada, shared some of what they’re doing to support technology-based solutions for insurance. And Alex Rafuse, VP of Underwriting and Portfolio Management at RSA Canada, offered a range of perspectives from different demographics on issues such as climate change and cyber security.
The Symposium Atlantic ended with Paul Croft and Kent Hudson of the CIP Society offering a big thank you to the generous sponsors and volunteers who made the day possible.