• December 3, 2020

The insurance industry has been a prime consumer of robotic process automation technology for several years and, according to a new report, adoption of RPA by insurers only will accelerate. By 2024, insurance companies will spend $634 million annually on RPA, up from $184 million this year. Robotic Process Automation in Telecoms & Insurance: Vendor Positioning, Strategies & Forecasts 2019-2024, a report from U.K.-based Juniper Research, attributes the massive growth in this area to the fallout from years of focus on growth through acquisition. M&A activity in the sector has resulted in many insurers being saddled with disparate policies and systems that are not as efficient as they could be. Cost savings for insurers will come from streamlining their processes—the very reason RPA exists.

Average spend per company in the insurance industry will increase 30 percent annually as they automate underwriting, claims management and data handling, the report predicts. North American and European insurers figure to be the biggest adopters of RPA, the report said, with more than 65 percent of companies implementing the technology by 2024.

The report’s authors did warn, however, that implementations could experience challenges as insurers attempt to find more efficiencies with robotic process automation.

“Although automation can bring results in a few weeks, scalability can only be achieved when bots ‘learn’ how to operate outside simulated environments,” said Juniper’s Maite Bezerra. “Bots must be continuously trained to understand exceptions and non-linear processes, or companies risk being left with limited return on their RPA investment.”