MSIG Holdings Asia's Grace Chong on IT trends that affect the insurance business

FY Teng

Grace Chong Director-Information Technology MSIG Holdings (Asia)

Grace Chong
Director-Information Technology
MSIG Holdings (Asia)

Grace Chong has been leading IT programmes for more than three decades in multiple geographies and various industries, among them high-tech, shipping, process chemicals, FMCG and financial services today. She is known for building strong teams and her keen analysis of operational and business issues, and also for her knack to solve complex operational and business problems. She has been at MSIG for six years now. Among her more recent major initiatives at the general insurer, are an enterprise-wide SAP implementation and a replacement of its core systems. We interviewed her recently after she had been named by IDC Financial Insights as one of Asia's top information executives in the financial services industry.

What are your business and ICT priorities for the next couple years?
Our business continues to focus on growth and profitability in the different market segments and distribution channels we operate in. Understanding customers and how to engage them effectively is vital to success. We want to enhance our customers' experience with us. One of our key ICT priorities in the short term is to replace our legacy core insurance system which are aged and difficult to support. The new system will bring about operational efficiencies and address our growing business needs. Security and mobility also rank high among our key ICT initiatives.

What initiatives do you have underway to meet objectives tied to these priorities?
We are currently embarking on the replacement of our core insurance system. This initiative goes beyond just replacing the policy administration and claims management system. We are investing in a broad suite of enabling solutions to address areas such as content management, customer communication management and so on. Eventually these new systems will help improve the operational efficiency around our core business processes and allow us to make better informed decisions, as well as keep us better connected with our customers.

What are you currently doing or doing more of in the following areas: Cloud, security and mobility?
On the Cloud: We are extremely cautious in adopting the public Cloud due to security concerns and stricter regulation in the financial services industry. We prefer not to put our critical business applications on the public cloud, at least not in the near future. The cost benefit versus SLA offerings available do not meet our requirements. However, we have internally adopted the private Cloud as the deployment option within our infrastructure to improve efficiency and agility. We will continue to evaluate our options around private, public and hybrid cloud models against cost benefit and risks to our organization.

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