Johannesburg, Gauteng – Using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), or drones as they are more commonly known in insurance, is gaining momentum. Globally, 17% of commercial drones in operation are used to assist insurers and large organisations in not only better assessing risk exposure but also improving both risk control evaluation and operational efficiency.
To this end, Indwe Risk Services has recently introduced a risk management solution using drone technology. It is designed to help optimise insurance-related processes, speed up and reduce the cost of surveys for risk assessment, and improve the claims management process.
“Technology for its own sake means very little if there is no demonstratable business value associated to it. As such, Indwe believes that when used correctly, drone technology empowers insurers and large corporates with an innovative way of measuring and evaluating the effectiveness of controls,” says Claude Hamman, Head of the Specialised Risk Advisory at Indwe Risk Services.
From a risk assessment and pricing perspective, drones can conduct aerial assessments to identify property features not otherwise possible by people. This approach, combined with expert risk management advice, provides insurers with more insight into the operational risk exposures and ensures that companies are more accurately insured while also streamlining the underwriting pricing processes.
Using UAVs have the added benefit of creating safer working conditions for both operational employees and risk control surveyors who must sometimes overcome dangerous or difficult obstacles to do proper risk assessments.
“Just consider the advantages drones can provide during natural disasters, such as flooding and forest fires. Instead of sending people into these dangerous situations, drones can assess damage. Even better, drones can assist in monitoring and alerting residents to potential danger by helping predict the path of destruction,” he says.
Field staff are more productive when using drone technology. They can conduct surveys faster than before and can get more work done during the day to greatly enhance customer satisfaction.
“For example, gathering data by drone can replace time-consuming and often dangerous processes. This drone mapping for inspection and insurance enables organisations to safely and easily capture high-resolution aerial views of a site in minutes. Manned aircraft are prohibitively expensive, and the information captured is not of the same quality that a drone can provide.”
The combination of technology and risk management expertise have resulted in the natural evolution of Risk Management Technology (RiskTech) which Indwe clients, insurance partners, and even its competitors have access to. RiskTech is a cost-effective way of accessing a risk management solution like drone surveys without having to incur the capital expenditure, staff, and maintenance costs associated with in-house drone fleets.
“The frequency and severity of risk continues to increase, due to global and local driving forces. The effective use of technology, combined with expert analytics and advice, will allow organisations to move from detect and repair, to predict and prevent, as technology advances,” he says.
Indwe Risk Services (Pty) Ltd is a leading personal, business and specialist risk and insurance advisory business. With the founding company established in 1903, Indwe has a formidable history in insurance and is today one of South Africa’s largest brokers, delivering award-winning service to clients across the country. For more information visit www.indwe.co.za or phone 0860 13 13 14.