Japan – Artificial intelligence replaces insurance employees
Friday, 01 06 2017, Category: Technology, Country: Asia
The idea that some roles in the re/insurance industry could be replaced by robots or, more specifically, artificial intelligence (AI) systems, appears to have become a reality this week with the allegation that Japanese insurer Fukoku Mutual Life Insurance will replace more than 30 employees with an AI system.
Such a possibility has been mooted by some in the industry for some time. In a 2016 report, entitled ‘AI in Insurance: Hype or Reality’, PWC suggested that “over time, as AI systems learn from their interactions with the environment and with their human masters, they are likely to become more effective than humans and replace them.”
That report suggested that advisors, underwriters, call centre representatives, and claims adjusters likely will be most at risk.
Fukoku Mutual Life Insurance has implemented an AI system based on IBM’s Watson Explorer, which apparently possesses “cognitive technology that can think like a human”. Its purpose appears to be to calculate pay-outs to policyholders.
Despite speculation in the wider media on job losses, the company has not been explicit in its expectations on this front so far. It has said, however, that it anticipates the AI will mean a 30 percent increase in productivity.
Source: Intelligent Insurer