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Kimberly Harris-Ferrante believes that in commercial lines underwriting automation initiatives, carriers should avoid trying to create “expert systems” that eliminate the underwriter. Instead, insurers should focus on providing “systems for experts”—technology that enables highly-skilled professionals to manage their workloads and time.

“Don’t just think about low- to no-touch processing. Think about the ways you can automate behind the scenes, to help with productivity and consistency of decision making, and create an audit trail of how you made the decision so you can tweak the process over time,” says Harris-Ferrante, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner.

“View automation in terms of activities or steps within the end-to-end process of writing business,” says Donald Light, senior analyst, Celent. “By doing so, you could automate a handful or dozens of steps, including decisions, depending on the complexity of the risk.”

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