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EMBRACING THE FUTURE Challenges facing ng education and competence development for the European Insurance industry in 2020 The 2012 EIET / eficert conference The Danish Insurance Academy

EMBRACING THE FUTURE The financial crisis is still raging. The European insurance industry face increased regulation, more international competitors and new business models. While we cannot say exactly where this will lead us, it will undoubtedly impact the educational needs of the industry. 20 years of networking Each year, the educational institutions within the insurance industry meet at the European Conference to discuss current issues such as these. In 2012, celebrating the 20th anniversary of the conference, participants from 16 countries met at the Danish Insurance Academy for a look into the future. What we found is both challenging and exciting. To succeed, we must be bold, think ahead and embrace the future.

SPEAKERS: • Annette Bjaaland Andersen, The Danish FSA • Carsten Beck, The Copenhagen Institute for Futures Studies • Mette Bergmann, DFL • Katharina Höhn, BWV • Rikke Larsen, Tryg Insurance • Torben Holme Nielsen, The Danish Insurance Academy • Nikolaj Stegeager, Aalborg University • Matthias Stettler, eficert • Inger Støjberg, MP for Venstre • William Vidonja, Insurance Europe 2


The insurance industry is met with increasing regulation from the EU. It affects pricing structures, data protection, product transparency and intermediation competences. These initiatives may well increase consumer protection and may enhance confidence in the industry. At the same time, some initiatives are founded in other industries, and may create unforeseen difficulties when implemented. We need to educate insurance employees to handle the changes Most of these initiatives affect the interaction with the customer, who is entitled to more information on the insurance products. As educational institutions for the industry we must be ready to integrate these demands into our curriculums.

WHAT TO DO? • Train insurance employees to comply with the regulation and communicate additional information to the customers • Develop European standards and guidelines for the industry • Interact with relevant organizations to influence decision making


CHANGING THE GAME The insurance industry and the existing business models are being challenged: • Technology is removing the language barrier and customer service can be performed anywhere • The social networks provide new distribution channels, but expose the companies to instant evaluation of successes and failures • The competition from global retail companies, such as hypermarkets, is increasing • Increased automation and digitalization improves risk assessment, and changes the work processes • Customers expect more individualized products, solutions and prices

We need to be able to work outside our comfort zone These changes can be seen as threats or opportunities. Either way, they will impact the way the industry works and the competences needed. As the industry’s educational institutions we must think ahead, adapt our programs as needed and help maintain the industry as an attractive workplace.

KEY WORDS AT THE CONFERENCE: • Globalisation • Robotisation • Game changing • Pressure • Talent • Challenges • Passion • Incentives • Education 4



Regulation and politics become more and more European rather than national. More global insurance companies are expanding outside their country of origin. The BRIC countries are educating themselves into the future, and may provide the opportunity for outsourcing even highly specialized jobs. And the technology is making cross-border communication and cooperation easier every day. Globalization is an issue for all insurance companies.

• Look for opportunities to cooperate with the emerging markets, e.g. by providing their education

It is not a question of how many employees we have, but where they work As the insurance companies become more globally oriented, the educational institutions will have to follow. Maybe directly by providing training abroad. Maybe more indirectly by adapting curriculums and programs.

• Create opportunities for the students to go abroad

• Challenge yourselves to work outside your comfort zone

• Increase the European cooperation 5

TRANSFERRING KNOWLEDGE Education within the insurance industry often takes place as vocational training and the quality is generally very high. However, research indicates that the education is not always transferred into the work place. While the students acquire new knowledge, it is not necessarily translated into new or changed practices that create value for the organization paying for the education. How do we document that increased education creates increased value for the organizations? As the educational institutions of the industry, we must address this transfer problem, when designing education programs. And we must take a more active role in demonstrating the return on investment in education to the industry.

WHAT TO DO? • Make teachers become transfer agents • Set up learning contracts between student, organisation and school • Involve the students in the learning process • Involve the organizations in the transfer process 6


Driving future needs for education The conference revealed clear trends that will drive the need for education in the European insurance industry in 2020 and beyond. Together with the industry, we must address the following challenges: • Globalization – Should employees be trained to work internationally or will we need to train employees working abroad? • Regulation – To which degree must the new regulation be integrated in the training of the employees?

• Digitalization – Which mix of skills and competences are needed, if more business processes are digitalized? • New business models – Do the companies need new competences in order to compete with new players or in new market segments? • Customization – What skills are needed in order to meet the customers’ need for individualization?







To learn more about this annual conference and how the Danish Insurance Academy will embrace the future, please contact Head of Development Bjarne Dyrberg at

Embracing the Future  

Challenges facing education and competence development for the European Insurance industry in 2020The 2012 EIET / eficert conferenceThe Dani...