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Why Corporate Innovation shouldn't be tied to Dollar Return

Friday, 07 Oct 2016


AIG, AXA Labs and MetLife Asia share their experiences.

The performance of corporate innovation hubs should be subject to “softer” ROI measures – particularly early on – to avoid stifling their potential, according to innovation leads from three of the world’s top insurers.

Speaking at the Dreamforce InsurTech Summit – a co-creation of Salesforce and Capgemini, representatives from AXA Labs, AIG and MetLife Asia were united on the types of KPIs they believed worked best for corporate innovation projects.

“In terms of KPIs, I think you need to crawl before learning how to walk,” AXA Labs CEO Guillaume Cabrere said.

“Most of our KPIs [in start-up] were on the softer side [and] mostly capability centric - how many pilots are you ready to launch? How many people are you exposing to this new way of thinking, working and prototyping? How many strategic partnerships have you been able to enter?”

MetLife Asia’s chief innovation officer Zia Zaman agreed.

Zaman runs the insurer’s year-old LumenLab in Singapore, which has been charged with finding disruptive business models “in the areas of wellness, wealth and retirement”.

“The only lasting thing that you can have as an innovation professional in the organisation is not a system, or KPI - it’s culture,” Zaman said.

“The number one thing that we work hard on is to change the way the [insurance] industry thinks about the customer.

“The end consumer is the only one that matters. When you refocus on the meaning of putting the customer at the centre of everything you do and you experiment … to come up with new ways of delivering value sooner to that customer embedded into everything that you do, the more likely you are to change mindsets and rescue the industry from the massive deflation of value caused by not being focused on the customer.

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