How can 2016 risk inform your 2017 strategy?

Posted on November 21, 2016 by Sarah Stadler

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2016 has been a year of growth and evolution here at SpatialKey from enhancing our solution for underwriters, actively monitoring catastrophic events that impacted insurers, and bringing on more 3rd-party data partnerships to fuel our solutions. With 2017 on the horizon, now is the time to reflect on the events of 2016 and understand how they can inform your strategy for 2017.

This year's success  

Enhanced data and analytics for underwriters

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We revamped our Underwriting app this year, giving users access to analytics and visualizations for any hazard, such as terror, flood, wind and crime. Underwriters can now access intelligence to inform risk selection, all in one place. Further, our solution offers the flexibility to consume and integrate any 3rd party or in-house content to assist with decision making across the globe.  Uniting data, analytics, and visualizations for underwriters to proactively manage your portfolio at the point of sale is an ongoing effort for SpatialKey, and we’re thrilled to be on the path to making data-driven underwriting a reality for all insurers. Take a look at this webinar recording featuring our terror underwriting solution.

On-time event response for claims
Our clients have been able to stay on top of catastrophe events as they happen by leveraging up-to-date event information from expert sources.  This produces competitive advantage, proactive customer outreach, efficient claims deployment and early intelligence to detect potential claims fraud. Combining timely expert data, visualization, and analytics in one spot offers tangible insight into potential exposure and helps reduce claims costs. Here are some of the notable events we saw this year, and how we visualized them in SpatialKey:

McMurray fire

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Hurricane Matthew  Hurricane_Matthew.png

Louisiana floods 

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European Windstorm app
We also heard the call from many of our European users to make it possible for them to understand severe windstorms (many of you reading might remember the impact windstorm Kyrill had nearly a decade ago), in SpatialKey. We collaborated with our valued partner, Willis Re, to create a purpose-built app for insurers to easily access, visualize and analyze insureds potentially affected by a storm, track windstorms as they happen with forecast data and event footprints, and overlay event footprints onto portfolio data in one intuitive dashboard. 

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More 3rd-party data providers

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At SpatialKey, we are deeply committed to making sure insurers have the right data at their fingertips, so they can easily analyze and visualize risk in their underwriting, exposure management and claims operations. 2016 brought even more expert data providers to SpatialKey’s platform, including HazardHub, EuroTempest, Location, Inc. and Impact Forecasting. Being a data agnostic platform means that insurers can access the most relevant data and models available in the industry, plus make use of their own in-house hazard, exposure and experience data, to make data-driven decisions for their business. To date, we are proud to have been selected as a value-added partner to these expert firms!

Focused on the power of collaboration 

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At SpatialKey, we believe that innovation is delivered with enhanced speed and quality as the result of industry collaboration, allowing each contributor to relentlessly focus in areas of core competence and focus its financial resources.  This collaboration requires involvement from the insurance and the commercial solution provider communities.  Insurers provide the proper business context and focus, while commercial providers work collaboratively to deliver best of breed data and software solutions that link disparate systems and serve up intelligence directly to the business user community.  


Our passionate leaders had a lot to say about that this year. Our CEO, Tom Link, wants to see everyone evolve in how they collaborate in today’s data driven world; our CTO, Brandon Purcell, published an insightful post on the buy vs. build debate and cost of ownership; and our VP of Products, Derek Blum, talked to us about leveraging the right experts to get ahead. Not to be left out, our COO, Bret Stone, authored a white paper on the subject that you can read here.

The point is, we care about working together to move the insurance industry forward, and we’ll always be putting energy and effort into making sure we leverage the experts around us to make SpatialKey solutions even more relevant, insightful and powerful.

 

Enough about the past, let’s talk about the future

Next year is going to be important for how insurers use technology and data. We will continue to see new technologies and practices emerge. Some of which seek to disrupt traditional practices, but almost all of which, will offer greater efficiency, cost savings, and decision support. Here are three ways we think insurers can stay ahead of the game in 2017:

Leverage technology for competitive advantage

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It’s a tough reality to face, but the current soft market may not improve next year.  Additionally, the "low rates" in the soft insurance market pertains to low premium rates. Add to this the fact that interest rates on investments have been particularly low for years and this means that there is even further pressure on underwriting profitability. 2016 saw significant wind, flood and wildfire event losses, and we have no reason to expect that 2017 will be less. InsurTech has been getting a lot of coverage, and the insurance industry is supporting this not only through adoption of new tech, but also injecting capital investment as well to activate new firms and initiatives and their associated innovations. InsurTech solutions have the potential to accelerate the decision making process, enhance data capture and accessibility, and deliver even more expert content.  All leading to efficient, better business. SpatialKey’s ongoing investment in geospatial insurance analytics ensures that insurers can readily access data and technology that support their critical business decisions.

Make rapid, informed and proactive decisions with data

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Data loses its power if it’s difficult to access, or worse yet, impossible to interpret. Insurers need data to work for them, not against them. They will continue to demand solutions that help them understand and analyze data quickly, so they can make informed decisions fast. More now than ever, insurers want to move analytics out of the back office and into the hands of the business with easy to use one-stop solutions that enable self-serve analysis of information.  

To that end, in 2017, SpatialKey will continue to commit 100% of its research and development into delivery of well-designed solutions, focused in the areas of underwriting, exposure management and claims.  Additionally, we will continue to seek collaborative partnerships with cat and non-cat expert content and technology providers to offer our clients even more choice and seamless access to the intelligence they need.  

Differentiate yourself through customer service

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In addition to the seamless integration of third party data, we see improving customer support and insight as a natural part of event response and as a key trend in 2017. Using data to proactively track a hurricane, wildfire, flood or other catastrophes empowers insurers to act quickly and respond to their insureds with speed and efficiency - amplifying their customer service and retention. In a soft market like today’s, there’s nothing more valuable than serving current customers and maintaining that strong business.

Connect now to learn how you can benefit from SpatialKey solutions

Posted in Wildfire, Hurricane, Underwriting, Flood, Data visualization, windstorm, Collaboration, claims, data partner | Leave a reply

SpatialKey® and Location, Inc. give underwriters access to crime risk data, enabling data-driven underwriting decisions and risk-based pricing

Posted on November 15, 2016 by Sarah Stadler

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SpatialKey Inc. (SpatialKey) is pleased to offer its insurance clients access to crime risk data from Location, Inc., a leading provider of U.S. location based analytics. Location, Inc. specializes in providing hyperlocal crime risk data to help underwriters understand, measure and select risk, and calculate premiums with greater accuracy. Exposure managers can also use Location Inc.’s crime risk data to quickly identify and manage adverse portfolio accumulations.

“The Location, Inc. team is excited to be partnering with an innovative geospatial insurance analytics company like SpatialKey,” said Dr. Andrew Schiller, CEO and Founder of Location, Inc. “Making our SecurityGauge® crime risk data available via the SpatialKey platform allows underwriters to visualize and gauge hyperlocal crime risk at the time they are making binding decisions. SpatialKey clients will gain access to another layer of intelligence, enabling their underwriters to more quickly and effectively assess risk and manage exposure.”

Location, Inc. provides a deep-market view of human behavior risks (fire, liability, and theft and vandalism) at the policy address level. Its geospatial behavioral crime indices leverage data collected from over 18,000 authoritative sources and model risk for the entire U.S. landscape, down to an unprecedented 33-foot resolution. This fine-grained assessment of intelligent crime risk data enables insurers to streamline operations by eliminating risks in the early stages of the underwriting process. Insurers can pinpoint pockets of low risk within regions often thought of as high risk and, conversely, locate pockets of high risk within regions often considered low risk, resulting in segmentation and premium advantage over competitors.

“SpatialKey is a valuable risk assessment solution for our underwriting teams,” said RLI Insurance Company President & COO Craig W. Kliethermes. “We rely on sophisticated data to assess and underwrite risks, so having the ability to seamlessly access and analyze Location, Inc.’s crime risk data within SpatialKey will allow us to expand our use of the platform.”

The SpatialKey Underwriting application already gives insurers the expert data and advanced analytics they need to assess other man-made and natural catastrophe perils. Now underwriters and exposure managers can access crime data within the solution to form a more comprehensive view of risk in one convenient platform.

“RLI’s commitment to innovation and reputation for underwriting excellence has made them a great partner to work with in delivering an analytic solution tailored to visualizing and analyzing crime risk,” said Bret Stone, COO, SpatialKey. “We’re excited to take this solution to market with the experts at Location, Inc. as we believe our shared goal to deliver real and actionable insights to the insurance market will help improve risk selection, lower costs and drive results to the bottom line.”

Posted in Press Releases, Data visualization, crime, data partner | Leave a reply

Willis Re and SpatialKey® collaborate to bring EuroTempest data to insurers

Posted on October 23, 2016 by Sarah Stadler

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New European Windstorm event response app available now

Willis Re, the reinsurance division of Willis Towers Watson (NASDAQ: WLTW), the global advisory, broking and solutions company has collaborated with SpatialKey Inc. to launch a new European Windstorm app. This powerful new event response application integrates data from multiple data sources, including EuroTempest—insurance industry experts in forecasting and reporting on European windstorm activity.

Accessible through a web browser, SpatialKey’s European Windstorm application provides seamless, real-time access to both forecast and historical event data. This enables insurance claims managers to perform geospatial analysis across an entire portfolio of insured properties exposed to a windstorm, making it easier to assess damage and to respond to claims as quickly as possible. Claims teams can also use the app to track windstorms as they happen, accessing forecast data and event footprints to understand their exposure and manage potential claims costs.

“We’re delighted to give our clients access to valuable windstorm data from EuroTempest through the powerful SpatialKey platform,” said Tim Edwards, Head of Europe Catastrophe Analytics, Willis Re International. “Now, Willis Re clients can easily access, visualize, and analyze the windstorm data they need to better respond to catastrophes as they occur.”

Nick Wood, Commercial Director, EuroTempest, said: “We’re pleased to partner with SpatialKey and Willis Re to offer insurers a way to visualize and better utilize our unique windstorm data through SpatialKey’s geospatial insurance analytics platform,” said Wood.

SpatialKey, which established a full-time presence in London earlier this year, is releasing the new app at a time when insured losses due to European windstorms average €3 billion per year, according to PERILS AG. During a typical season, which begins in November and ends in March, an average of six windstorms threaten Europe, affecting insured properties across multiple countries. European Windstorm is the newest event response app from SpatialKey.

“We’re excited to offer our European clients the expert data and advanced analytics they need to proactively prepare for incoming windstorm claims,” said Derek Blum, Vice President, Product Marketing, SpatialKey. “Insurers rely on contextualized expert content to manage their response, and using SpatialKey’s European Windstorm solution simplifies and speeds up that process during events, when every minute counts.”

 

Posted in Press Releases, Data visualization | Leave a reply

Hurricane Patricia Shaping up to be the Strongest Hurricane in History

Posted on October 23, 2015 by Sarah Stadler

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Rapidly turning into a category 5 storm overnight, Hurricane Patricia is nearing the coast of Mexico with wind speeds of up to 200mph. Hurricane Ike topped out at 143mph, and Andrew at 175mph, leaving Patricia as the strongest hurricane ever recorded. With landfall expected this afternoon or evening, properties are bound to be destroyed, and insurers are preparing themselves for the impact.

Hurricane Patricia Wind Pattern - SpatialKey

50,000 people are being evacuated, and the town of Manzanilla is right on Patricia’s path. According to reports from CNN, a 30-foot storm surge is expected in Manzanilla’s bay, which is likely to cause flooding and landslides. Puerto Vallarta and Acapulco are the closest resort towns, and some are predicting that Puerto Vallarta will see winds up to 75mph - many businesses there are preparing for the storm by boarding and taping up windows. Our thoughts are with everyone bracing for such a devastating storm.

Wind speed visualized
Patricia’s winds are record-setting, clocking in at 200mph and holding steady - enough to carry an airplane and keep it in flight, according to World Meteorological Organization spokeswoman Clare Nullis. We can see here that a number of properties are vulnerable to the potential destruction from the combination of wind and water that this hurricane is predicted to produce.

Hurricane Patricia Potential Impact - SpatialKey

How this could impact your portfolio
With resort towns Puerto Vallarta and Acapulco threatened, insurers are likely to see some potential property claims after the storm clears. Understanding how much of your portfolio is exposed helps you figure out what to do next. With our direct integration with NOAA, insurers can immediately track the storm as updates are released. We’re here to help - contact us now.

Posted in weather, Hurricane, Insurance, Visualization, Analytics, Data visualization, Event response | Leave a reply

SpatialKey Selected by ProSight Specialty to Advance Underwriting Practices Through Data Analytics and Visualization

Posted on October 20, 2015 by Sarah Stadler

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London, October 20, 2015 – SpatialKey Inc. (SpatialKey) is providing ProSight Specialty Underwriters Ltd. (ProSight) with intuitive, geospatial analytics and visualization for its underwriting team and coverholders.

SpatialKey’s Underwriting solution provides analytics and visualizations tailored to the underwriting workflow, enabling ProSight and its coverholders to consistently and confidently underwrite across multiple commercial programs. Specifically, ProSight is accessing rich data analytics, coupled with high quality data from natural hazard experts, JBA Risk Management (JBA), to select and price risks, manage accumulations and calibrate underwriting strategy.

“Developing a complete understanding of risk when evaluating prospective insureds is an essential component of our underwriting practice as we proactively manage our portfolio at the point of sale. SpatialKey and JBA provide an integrated solution we can trust and help us gain competitive advantage, deliver underwriting profit and reduce downstream claims and reinsurance costs.” Rob Saxon, Underwriting Control Manager, ProSight

“We are delighted to have been adopted by ProSight and their coverholders as a best practice to enhance ProSight’s profitability and execute their underwriting strategy. We look forward to driving continued innovation through our products and partnerships as a result of the work we are doing with ProSight.“ Bret Stone, COO, SpatialKey

About SpatialKey

SpatialKey is reinventing the way insurers transform data into actionable intelligence. SpatialKey solutions amplify the value of insured data and expert content through unmatched user experiences and breakthrough geospatial business intelligence. Through focused analytics and agile visualizations, SpatialKey helps more than 100 insurers understand global risk accumulations and composition, respond to live catastrophe events, and manage exposure proactively at the point of underwriting. For more information visit spatialkey.com.

Posted in Press Releases, Press, Insurance, Underwriting, Analytics, Data visualization | Leave a reply

Ring and Target Accumulations help you avoid and manage excessive exposure to terrorist activity

Posted on July 14, 2015 by Sarah Stadler

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It’s important for insurers to have an advanced understanding of their exposure concentrations as well as concentrations where terror attacks are most likely to occur, so they can analyze their current book of business effectively and apply guidelines to select new business as it is underwritten. We’ve developed Rings and Target models within our Accumulations app to assess any type of accumulation, but many of our clients are turning to these models for a deeper understanding of terror accumulations related to their current portfolio or new business that they’re evaluating.

The Rings and Target accumulation models are powerful tools that help you:

    • Identify peak accumulations of exposure within your portfolio. Many legacy solutions leave gaps that SpatialKey has been able to fill with its industry-leading methodology, so you can manage and write with confidence, knowing no potential accumulations have been missed.
    • Analyze your portfolio relative to points of interest. Load any set of location references to analyze concentrations against, like a dataset of high-interest properties, points of interest, historical terror claims or activity, etc.
    • Look at a terror target dataset (locations identified as having terrorism risk such as skyscrapers, churches, train stations, etc.
    • Understand event history (e.g. terror target history, tornado touchdowns, claims experience points, etc.)
    • Evaluate accumulations against your own portfolio locations – run an accumulations analysis by drawing a ring around each point in your own dataset
    • Understand the composition of each accumulation by any attribute of your data and understand which policies and locations contribute to it

Rings and Targets, along with our other models in Accumulations, gives you the option to run your analysis based on specific metrics in your own dataset, on exposed limits, or on a specific area of interest within custom geographic extents. Don’t ignore the impact terror can have on your portfolio and get ahead of it by implementing these new models today. Reach out and we’ll get everything set up for you: sales@spatialkey.com

 

 

Posted in Insurance Intelligence, Insurance, Visualization, Analytics, Data visualization | Leave a reply

Custom calculations in dashboards have arrived!

Posted on August 15, 2014 by Rebecca Morris

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We just released another set of updates for you in our August release... there's one in particular that we think you'll be thrilled about!

Have you ever wanted to display a ratio in your dashboard based on 2 fields from your dataset, e.g. Loss Ratio = Gross AAL / Premium? Have you ever wanted to display the sum of multiple fields, e.g. TIV = Coverage A + Coverage B + Coverage C + Coverage D?

In response to your feedback, you now have flexibility to create custom calculations in your dashboard by combining different metrics within your data. With this new feature, there is no longer a need to calculate derivative metrics, like ratios, summations, differences, etc., outside of SpatialKey.

You can now create your own equation using any metric fields in your dataset and analyze this value-added data in maps and visualization pods.

It's simple - just use our wizard for define your calculations...

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...and visualize! Advanced calculations work in most visualization pods, and can also be a powerful way to visualize your data on the map.

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We hope you enjoy the flexibility and analytic value this new feature delivers. Don't forget to check out the rest of the features in the August release as well.

Posted in Insurance, Releases, Analytics, Data visualization | Leave a reply

We make it and use it too

Posted on March 26, 2010 by admin

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Tom Link, Universal Mind CTO, presented the company's "state of the business" at a recent internal meeting. And of course, as SpatialKey's General Manager, he used SpatialKey to more visually highlight sales activities and trends, as well as answer employee questions on the fly.

SpatialKey as a visual dashboard is a great example to highlight since it's commonly used by our clients- but since our clients don't really want to share their company data with the world for us to use in demos, we thought we'd use ours! Of course, we changed employee names and client revenues for this video since we don't want to reveal our secrets either.

As a background, Universal Mind, SpatialKey's parent company, is a leader in the field of Rich Internet Applications (RIA) development using next generation Web 2.0 technologies. The company is comprised of employees, as well as a network of consultants, all spread throughout the US. Clients include companies as diverse as Adobe, Cisco, Behr, CVS, Ben&Jerry's, Visa, Children's Hospital Boston, Verizon and many more. Dispersed teams often don't get the big picture of how their work fits within the broader company or how they are performing compared to others. For Universal Mind, SpatialKey has helped bridge that gap.

Tom's presentation focused on sales activities and sales performance. How did we do last year? How did we grow geographically? Which clients generated the most aggregated revenue? What trends do we see for the year ahead? Are there any location trends we should capitalize on? Who were our top performing sales reps? Is there a correlation between the location of our reps and the success of our sales activities? Which consultants generated the most billable hours? Where are they located? What revenue did they generate across clients?

See the video above for a small example of the many visualizations and analysis capabilities SpatialKey offers for sales data. Notice how quickly Tom gets answers to any question he asks about the companies' sales activities. Universal Mind uses Salesforce to track and manage its sales pipeline, so the data you see highlighted comes from a direct import from Salesforce, but any CSV-type data would work just as well.

If you are interested in finding out more or need help setting up your free trial, do not hesitate to contact us.

Posted in Dashboard, Sales mapping, examples, Visualization, Sales intelligence, Sales & Marketing, solutions, Data visualization | Leave a reply

Visual mapping and analysis for "regular" business users?

Posted on February 1, 2010 by admin

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We all know that a picture is worth a thousand words. Images from Tiananmen Square, September 11th, or the recent devastation in Haiti are universally understood and move people to action more than words ever could. Visualizing vs. reading about events is becoming more and more prevalent, with an increasing number of people receiving their information from the web or cell phone. In parallel with the upsurge in use of images and multimedia content to communicate information, the advent of Google Earth, online maps, or car and phone navigation tools has created an explosion in the use of visual maps in every day life. Instead of reading text, we are now provided maps to more easily see how to get from point A to point B, or where to find open homes in a specific neighborhood. For most of us, seeing is understanding and believing.

Photo courtesy of Google maps.

On the business side, 80% of business data has a location component which provides a goldmine of untapped information for marketing, sales and operations. But current visual mapping and analysis tools are expensive, can only be accessed by trained specialists, and require heavy IT involvement to set up and maintain. This is a big barrier to entry for most businesses. They want to "see", understand and communicate data trends, but don't have the time nor means to invest in yet another expensive infrastructure.

The businesses that already do leverage visual mapping and analysis can more effectively and more quickly see geographic or time-based data and trends critical to sales and operations. This provides them a real competitive advantage. Many oil and gas companies for example have invested in sophisticated Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and brought in GIS specialists to gain insight on their location intelligence via visual maps. This allows them not only to plot areas with the highest potential to drill in, but also better manage their pipelines, operations, retail facilities, and more.

.... or.... . ...and...

 

... and..

Thankfully, a revolution is taking place that allows "regular" business users -with no GIS training nor deep pockets- to leverage the power of visual mapping and analysis. Enter Software as a Service (SaaS). SaaS is transforming mapping and data visualization in the business world the same way Google Maps revolutionized mapping for consumers. Using cost-effective, user friendly SaaS mapping and analysis applications, such as SpatialKey, organizations of all types and sizes can now import their business data, combine it with geographic or competitive information, and start visually analyzing trends critical to their business. Where are key customers located? How can they maximize results in their sales territories? How best to map their sales territories? Where should they open a new retail outlet? How does Q2 sales compare to Q1 on a geographic basis? What marketing campaign resulted in the highest ROI? And so much more.

Opportunities and threats previously hidden within row and column-based datasets are now clearly visible via interactive maps. Concepts difficult to explain in text or PowerPoint presentations can now also be shown and therefore easily understood resulting in better decision making. What’s more, since everyday decision makers can use these applications, “what if” questions can be answered on the fly versus having to wait for an analyst to do a new data query. Decision-making, communication, and collaboration are improved. After all, seeing is understanding and believing, even in the business world.

Note: we'll be adding blog posts around visual mapping for sales and marketing users over the next few weeks. In the meantime you can find out more at our sales and marketing and/or enterprise solutions pages.

Posted in sales territories, Mapping, Sales mapping, examples, Location intelligence, GIS, Sales & Marketing, solutions, Target marketing, Data visualization | Leave a reply