Chief executive says the broker is ‘learning a lot already’ about unstructured data

Intermediary organisation PIB Group plans to make a “big investment” in data analytics over the next five years, according to PIB Group chief executive Brendan McManus.

Centred around better understanding unstructured data, the investment in data analytics aims to help PIB Group to “improve retention” and “win new business more easily”.

Speaking exclusively to Insurance Times, McManus revealed that PIB Group initially started invested in data analytics last year, however the firm plans to spend millions bolstering its data science capabilities over the next five years.

He said: “We have quite a lot of businesses that maybe hadn’t invested a huge amount in their technology before, but from now on, we’re going to invest a huge amount in technology to make sure we’re at the cutting edge.

“The big investment we’re now making is in data analytics and looking at how we access all the unstructured data. We’ve got structured data – information about the policy and the client and the history – we’ve got all that.

“But all the unstructured data that’s out there that tells us something about that client, all the unstructured data we have in our emails, or diaries, or calendars – all that information might be able to tell us how we can improve retention a little bit or how we could win new business more easily.

“That’s probably the big investment that we’re making this year aside from M&A and people and digital propositions.”

A learning journey

Despite data analytics being a new focus for the broker, McManus has not clearly defined the end result of PIB Group’s investment or what the firm wants to achieve from this work.

“We’re making quite big investments in data analytics – sometimes, not knowing exactly what the result is going to be,” he explained.

“You’ve got to start investing in it and find out what you find out, but we’re learning a lot already.”