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Is Customer Service Strategic?
May 27, 2008 @ 15:36 PM | By Anthony O'Donnell

While C-level execs and front line customer service people agree about the importance of service to the brand, their opinions diverge notably as one moves into the details that contrast objectives and practices.

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AIG Wins With Reds in Moscow
May 22, 2008 @ 13:44 PM | By Anthony O'Donnell

It may be that annoying ads are effective as pleasing ones. However, I can't help thinking there's some advantage in the reassuring presence of Dennis Haysbert in the Allstate ads and the Cockney charm of GEICO's gecko. Similarly, one has to believe that AIG benefits enormously not just from the frequency of exposure that comes with a brand such as Man U, but also, as in the case of Accenture's Tiger Woods ads, the association with a winner.

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Google Launches Its Own PHR
May 20, 2008 @ 17:36 PM | By Nathan Conz

Why insurance carriers might ultimately be the key to success for Google's newly launch PHR initiative.

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ACORD/LOMA Musings
May 20, 2008 @ 16:22 PM | By Anthony O'Donnell

From the perspective of a journalist meeting vendors and analysts, the show can't fail to be a success, and so it was for me and my colleagues at I&T. However, I also had an outstanding experience in terms of the number and rank of insurance executives I happened to see. Several were old friends but some were new people I was very happy to have the chance to meet.

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Health Insurance Consumer Demand Could Shift Towards Mobile Functionality
May 13, 2008 @ 16:41 PM | By Nathan Conz

There has been no shortage of health insurers who have made news over the past few years by embracing a more customer-centric business strategy and, as a result, rolling out several customer-facing online tools. The next step though, I believe, center around how insurers make those tools available to members (and, in some instance, potential members) on mobile devices.

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Big Vendors Affirm Insurance Opportunity
May 13, 2008 @ 11:57 AM | By Anthony O'Donnell

As if to validate last week's Editor's Note, major horizontal vendors have demonstrated its introductory hypothesis, perhaps best summarized by the words of the notorious Willy Sutton. When asked why he robbed banks, Sutton famously replied, "That's where the money is."

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The Test of Relevance: Ed Zore, Northwestern Mutual
May 06, 2008 @ 01:27 AM | By Anthony O'Donnell

Edward J. Zore, Northwestern MutualAnthony O'Donnell, Senior Editor of Insurance & Technology, speaks with Edward J. Zore, one of I&T's 2008 Tech-Savvy CEOs, about the need to balance opportunism and prudence in technology investment in pursuit of business success.

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The Virtues of Virtual: Ron Boyd, Midwest Family Mutual
May 06, 2008 @ 01:24 AM | By Anthony O'Donnell

Ron Boyd, Midwest Family MutualAnthony O'Donnell, Senior Editor of Insurance & Technology, speaks with Ron Boyd, one of I&T's 2008 Tech-Savvy CEOs, about his role in driving paperlessness and remote work while expanding Midwest Family Mutual's geographic business footprint.

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Eyeing the Competition: Thomas C. Godlasky, Aviva North America
May 06, 2008 @ 01:19 AM | By Nathan Conz

Thomas C. Godlasky, Aviva North AmericaNathan Conz, Associate Editor of Insurance & Technology, speaks with Thomas C. Godlasky, one of I&T's 2008 Tech-Savvy CEOs, about Aviva North America's technology turnaround, the carrier's foray into Second Life and the importance of looking outside the industry.

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Fast Company: Stephen Sills, Darwin Professional Underwriters
May 06, 2008 @ 01:17 AM | By Kathy Burger

John Leonard, MEMIC Kathy Burger, editorial director of Insurance & Technology, speaks with Stephen Sills, one of I&T's 2008 Tech-Savvy CEOs, about how five-year-old Darwin Professional Underwriters is shaking up the specialty liability insurance segment by bring straight-through processing and self-service to a traditionally unautomated, paper-bound business.

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The Utilitarian: John Leonard, MEMIC
May 06, 2008 @ 01:08 AM | By Nathan Conz

John Leonard, MEMIC Nathan Conz, Associate Editor of Insurance & Technology, speaks with John Leonard, one of I&T's 2008 Tech-Savvy CEOs, about his role in defining technology philosophy at MEMIC, the importance of a strong CIO and his work on board of industry standards group ACORD.

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Real Opportunity or Hype?: Video Games and Insurance
May 05, 2008 @ 17:27 PM | By Nathan Conz

As a member of the I&T editorial team, I'm constantly inundated with new product announcements, story pitches and press releases -- with each e-mail or phone call assuring me that the product or concept in question is revolutionary, industry-changing or both. As a result, a big part of our job here at the magazine is to cut through the hype and find out what really works -- not in theory, but in practice.

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Why Tech Savvy Matters to CEOs - And To Those Who Judge Them
May 05, 2008 @ 15:20 PM | By Anthony O'Donnell

Every once in a while, when acquaintances jocularly question the economics of a trade publication dedicated to the subject of insurance IT, I ask them to guess how much the largest insurance carriers spend annually on IT. My interlocutors typically answer, "I dunno; maybe $10 million?" I laugh in a way reminiscent of the characters responding to Dr. Evil's pathetic ransom demand in the first Austin Powers film and say, "Try again." They give their second answer, sure that this time they vastly overshoot the mark: "OK, one hundred million!" I laugh some more.

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