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11:51 AM
Nathan Golia
Nathan Golia
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AXA's New Life HQ Places Premium on Innovation

The new headquarters for AXA Equitable's Life Operations is built around facilitating an innovative culture.

There's a sense that insurance companies' IT organizations are putting a premium on innovation these days. Late last year, I wrote that they're doing a pretty good job of it. At the same time, some report that they are having trouble really getting their arms around it.

But no matter where on that continuum a given insurance company lies, they are looking for ways to get that innovative edge. AXA Equitable recently opened a new, 700-staffer Life Operations center in Charlotte, N.C.'s Innovation Park complex. The selection of venue isn't by accident, according to the company's CEO, Mark Pearson.

"AXA Equitable's aspiration is to build our market leadership through innovation, delivering on our promises to our customers and being a trusted partner to our distributors," Pearson said in a statement. "To pursue excellence and deliver exceptional value to our customers, we need to create a more open and collaborative work environment, and we are starting here today in Charlotte."

Meanwhile, MassMutual didn't change their headquarters, but CIO Bob Casale led a "reimagining" of the IT organization over the past few years with the goal of creating an agile, fun and innovative workplace.

"We've created the headroom for an innovation agenda: we have an emerging tech group, and we're trying to develop bold hypotheses and not be a bystander," he told I&T.

What is changing at your company to meet the innovation imperative? Tell us in comments, via e-mail, or on Twitter.

Nathan Golia is senior editor of Insurance & Technology. He joined the publication in 2010 as associate editor and covers all aspects of the nexus between insurance and information technology, including mobility, distribution, core systems, customer interaction, and risk ... View Full Bio

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