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Turn Big Data into Insights and Opportunities with Data Virtualization

IoE and the Insurance Impact
The Internet of Everything (IoE) and its impact on financial services and more specifically, insurance, is at its infancy. Many other industries are already taking advantage of data coming from historically non-communicative devices to make changes to processes, automate inventories and adjust the amount of water required for farming. As IoE proliferates within the insurance industry, there becomes an increasing need to connect data sources and virtualize that data. With more connected “things” than ever, data points can be utilized in different ways to provide better customer service, prevent fraud and develop new products. Because these new data points can change everything from a business model to product design, insurers need sophisticated software to manage them. All of these additional data points are on top of the explosion of data already in the industry – referred to as “big data”.

Insurers are now looking into software solutions that virtualize data and connect disparate sources around the firm to business intelligence applications that decision makers are using to look for specific insights. The opportunity won or lost will be determined by how well a business leader leverages their data to affect business value and obtain a significant advantage over competition. Data virtualization, a way of optimizing data from disparate sources, allows insurers and financial professionals the ability to manage big data and get updates in real-time without moving it from its original location. By leaving the data in its original location, it reduces the duplication of data when data marts and data warehouses are created for specific analytics applications (e.g. Customer Information File) and allows for other applications to easily access the data as well. Read More »

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Emerging Insurance Practices: Cloud Computing

The insurance industry is continuously looking for the simplest, most efficient method of providing consumers with the best service, while at the same time trying to reduce overall operating expenses. While insurance providers explore the right options for their business, one thing is certain, cloud-based environments are low-risk solutions that enable applications to increase business value. From Cisco research, we know that running desktop applications in the cloud can be attractive because it reduces complexity and increases security.

Aside from the insurance industry, other financial services institutions struggle to find a business structure that provides the desired flexibility and market savings necessary to provide excellent customer service. However, with the help of cloud computing and unified communications, these challenges are being overcome. Due to recent success and proven low-risk functionality, insurers are gradually adopting cloud solutions to help guide business operations and initiatives. In fact, Gartner is predicting that the cloud system infrastructure market to grow by 47.8% through 2015. Read More »

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The Service Provider Cure: Healing an Ailing Healthcare System

By Tine Christensen, Director of US Service Provider Practice, Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG)

America’s healthcare system has been laid low with a scourge of acute symptoms. Spiraling costs, an epidemic of chronic diseases, and a spike in the senior demographic are all driving a mounting crisis. Throw in a gridlocked U.S. Congress and an unresolved regulatory climate, and a “miracle” cure seems a remote dream.

Lately, however, a healing light has been shining from a surprising source: service providers.

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