Big Data, Small Insights

Big Data, Small Insights

Satyen Paneri

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Big Data is a common buzzword in the business and technology world today. Wikipedia defines Big Data as a broad term for data sets so large or complex that traditional data processing applications are inadequate. The 4 V’s – Volume, Velocity, Variety, and Veracity - characterize big data.

The opportunities Big Data presents are profound, and insurance being a data-centric industry is no exception. But what is this big opportunity with Big Data? Or to put it another way, what’s the big deal with Big Data? Technology for storage and processing of Big Data is not really a concern today, as it keeps evolving quickly in accordance with Moore’s Law. The opportunity lies in the nuggets of genius that are buried deep inside mounds of data. It’s these small pieces of intelligence – Small Insights – that help make better decisions and improve outcomes.

Small Insights don’t mean little value. Small Insights inform massive decisions for business or important decisions for individuals. Furthermore, the power of data to couple these Small Insights with the context in which people interact with a product or service makes it even more powerful.

Small Insights are best illustrated when viewed from a user role or persona perspective:

  • Executives have to make many decisions such as:

  • Underwriters make daily decisions such as:

  • Supervisors & Team Managers make daily decisions such as:

  • Customer service representatives (CSRs) make daily decisions such as:

Small Insights, when encapsulated with the right analytics, visualizations, targeted for a user role or persona, and delivered within the right context, will help deliver the opportunity promised by Big Data. A combination of these elements is what constitutes an application for a user role or persona. The right number of such applications embedded within the core processes of claims, billing, and policy management will help improve the user experience as well as business outcomes.

Small Insights are Applications that will deliver the value hidden in Big Data.