Originally featured in Risk and Insurance.

For all of its best intentions, when it comes to the real “moments that matter,” today’s risk management ecosystem is operating well below its potential.

“It’s time to pick up the pace!” according to Paul Marushka, president of Marsh ClearSight, a business unit of Marsh that provides risk, safety and claims management software, analytics and services, formerly known as CS STARS.

“Risk management quite simply has not kept up with critical business process and technology developments of the past decade,” Marushka said.

For example, Marushka feels that risk management has lagged in taking a more “consumerized” approach to software applications and systems. Marushka believes that there is an opportunity for risk management applications to follow the lead from business-to-consumer software developers in dramatically improving the user experience and thereby enhancing workflow effectiveness and efficiency.

“We should be looking to the applications developed by technology innovators such as Google, LinkedIn and Apple,” he said.

“Our world today is more connected than ever, but risk management has not developed a truly collaborative process that encompasses all major stakeholders such as brokers, insurance carriers, reinsurers, TPAs and risk managers. In addition, most existing risk management data systems communicate poorly with each other and are woefully inadequate to handle today’s Big Data and analytics needs. And it’s time that we as an industry more aggressively address that fact!”

As a result, those “moments that matter” – times when the best risk management decisions must be made because lives and/or property are on the line – represent missed opportunities.

“Today’s risk professionals are at the epicenter of critical risk situations,” Marushka said. “Unfortunately, they often do not have the complete insight needed to make critical business decisions around risk and safety that may impact thousands of lives.”

Marushka cited the example of healthcare technology and analytics. By providing nurses and doctors with intuitive and flexible software to record and track incidents in hospitals, the adoption rate of digitizing this information increases. As a result of using sophisticated algorithms within the software, this data can be correlated against safety procedures to enhance overall patient safety. Marushka pointed to the example of a top children’s hospital that used an early version of Marsh ClearSight’s software to aggregate data across the hospital and use the analytics provided by the software to monitor key risk trends. After identifying specific medication errors in emergency room treatment of a certain condition, the hospital introduced a scanning procedure that flagged the potential condition before medication was distributed.

In addition, new equipment for matching medication to patient’s IDs was used. As a result, Marushka noted, the hospital experienced a 50 percent reduction in preventable harm and an 85 percent reduction in serious safety events.

“When we talk with our customers, we constantly hear how these disparate technologies and processes are slowing down workflows, prohibiting communication, limiting effectiveness, and ultimately putting lives at risk,” he said.

Marushka noted that the current ecosystem consists of multiple silos. This applies across the various stakeholders within the risk management ecosystem itself, and perpetuates the limited view managers across an organization have into risk.

“It’s as if everyone is speaking a different language and no one has the translator button,” he said.

“The technologies already exist across a variety of industries to address these issues, but they have never been utilized by the risk management community due to lack of integrated applications built upon a rich data set specifically focused on the risk management issues.”

Marushka looks to best practices like Apple’s integrated software application strategy when it comes to smart platform integration as one that might be modeled in the risk industry. On the collaboration front, Marushka cited LinkedIn for its strength in successfully bringing together job candidates, recruiters and business leaders, both for talent and networking as well as collaboration on common business issues.

For analytics, Marushka noted how social analytics from Twitter is being used by financial institutions to scour for comments about potential cyber security threats well in advance of them actually occurring.

“Until now, we have not seen examples like these in the risk management space,” he said.

“And we cannot afford to lag in the data and technology worlds any longer.”

According to Marsh ClearSight research, the demand from risk professionals is there:

  • They want analytics! In a recent study, 92 percent of risk management professionals surveyed believe analytics would help them in forecasting and reporting.
  • They want enhanced workflows! Seventy two percent said they would like to have more risk technology in place to enhance the workflow process.
  • They want collaboration tools! Another 65 percent said they would like more tools to foster collaboration, not only within their own company, but also across the entire risk management ecosystem.

So what can be done?

“Plenty!” said Marushka.

With a vision and commitment to deliver the new capabilities, Marsh ClearSight is already impacting the industry with its “next-generation” integrated risk management platform and solution. “We believe Marsh ClearSight permanently shifts the risk management paradigm, taking it to the level that risk management professionals have said they desperately need and want,” said Marushka, who recently announced the launch of the next generation platform bearing the same name as the company itself – Marsh ClearSight.

“It’s the first cloud-based platform with integrated applications and collaborative tools with deep, extensive analytics, all leveraging the industry’s largest data set, all designed from the ground up to help risk managers make the best decisions at critical moments.”

Simply, Marsh ClearSight is a cloud-based, end-to-end platform of integrated applications that offers an innovative level of insight and interactivity, including access to thirdparty data and tools, as well as the existing Marsh ClearSight product lineup.

“Big data in risk, safety and claims presents great opportunities for companies seeking to reduce their total cost of risk, but it requires real-time analytics and an intuitive way for colleagues to share information and collaborate,” Marushka explained.

In addition to multi-party collaboration, Marsh ClearSight also features dynamic workflow applications and real-time data and analytics from traditional and new sources such as social media. Marsh ClearSight is accessible via desktop PCs, laptops, tablets and smart phones from anywhere in the world. And it integrates all of Marsh ClearSight products and services into a single, simple view.

Most of all, Marushka said Marsh ClearSight addresses the fundamental problems the industry faces today: Those related to platform, collaboration and analytics. “Marsh ClearSight applies all the significant technologies available today into a single, consumer-like end user experience,” he said.

“This data-rich platform of integrated applications allowing for a collaborative approach among the risk management stakeholders fundamentally changes the way companies manage their risk. It is risk management re-defined and reimaged. It is dynamic risk management.”