jay bourland insurtech ny

A Look Back at Jay Bourland’s InsurTech NY 2023 Talk

How Fenris Digital is Transforming InsurTech with Accessible, Impactful AI

At InsurTech NY 2023, Fenris Digital CTO Jay Bourland delivered a thought-provoking talk on how machine learning and AI are reshaping the insurance industry. (See the video at the end of this post.) Through an engaging story and practical examples, Bourland highlighted Fenris’ unique approach. Fenris is leading the change by delivering highly customized, actionable insights through reusable model pipelines. This strategy sets Fenris apart from other players in the market. More on that but, first, some contextual background.

Common Challenges of Internal IT Projects

A Single View of the Customer Across Departments is Nearly Impossible

He began by recounting an executive’s proposal to build an in-house system for managing customer relationships. However, he rejected this notion, noting that CRM implementations often fail not due to technology limitations but because different departments cannot agree on a single view of the customer. This lack of alignment makes it nearly impossible to gain a holistic understanding of individual policyholders.

The Majority of Internal Technology Projects are Expensive and Don’t Scale

Bourland then delved into why internal technology projects no longer create sustainable competitive advantages. He explained that the vast majority of costs associated with software development are incurred upfront during the initial creation. However, each additional copy has almost no marginal cost due to efficiencies of scale. Therefore, companies that produce software products as their core business can amortize these upfront expenditures across a large customer base.

How to Scale Machine Learning and AI Development Affordably

Standardize the Model-Building Process

He said he sees analogous economics at play within machine learning and AI development. While models require custom data inputs tailored to each insurer’s business, most of the underlying model-building process can be standardized into reusable pipelines. This allows Fenris to rapidly retrain models on fresh customer data, delivering faster, more accurate insights that stay up-to-date as business needs evolve. It also means insurers no longer need to divert extensive resources toward building these complex capabilities in-house.

Train and Retrain Large Data Models with Three Crucial Factors

Rather than hyper-focusing on raw model accuracy, Bourland emphasizes there are three crucial factors for success in training a large data model: trainability, transparency, and performance. Models must be easily retrained on the latest data flows to remain relevant over time. He believes they should help customers understand the rationale behind recommendations to build trust and must deliver predictions at scale within strict latency requirements to power mission-critical workflows.

Produce Data Insights that You Can Act On to Improve Outcomes

Most importantly, Bourland stressed that the true value of AI lies not in insights alone, but in how organizations consume and act upon those insights. Fenris helps insurers move beyond a “knowing-doing gap” by empowering teams to leverage data-driven recommendations to improve outcomes. For example, one customer used Fenris models, powered by AI, to optimize their customer acquisition pipeline, freeing up time to focus on high-impact activities like sales.

Machine Learning as a Service Allows Insurers Actionable Insights without Compromising Resources and Agility

In closing, Bourland presented a compelling vision of machine learning as a service becoming the future operating model for insurers. By leveraging standardized, reusable processes and expert data science capabilities, Fenris not only delivers highly customized and actionable AI-powered insights but also transforms insurers from passive data collectors into proactive problem solvers. This approach allows insurers to gain actionable intelligence without diverting core resources or compromising agility – a significant benefit of partnering with Fenris.

Combine Your Insurance Expertise and our Data Scientists for Accessible, Impactful AI

Bourland’s talk provided valuable perspectives on how Fenris Digital is revolutionizing the InsurTech industry through accessible, impactful AI. By handling complex model development and continuously optimizing insights, Fenris allows insurers to focus on their expertise in insurance rather than becoming internal tech companies. This partnership approach ensures machine learning truly matters for insurance businesses and their customers.

Click here to learn more about how Fenris can help you get started.

Click below to see Jay’s presentation in its entirety.


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