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2018 Excellence Awards Entry: Identifying Cross-Sales Opportunities on the Insurance Market
Name: Carlos Amaral
Company: Aon Centre for Innovation and Analytics
Collaborators: Giuseppe Tortorici, Julia Cederroth
Overview of Use Case:
To develop a time-saving solution which generalized a global problem experienced across a diverse 200+ employee organisation, while also cultivating knowledge sharing and Alteryx new usership among teams traditionally limited by MS Excel analytics. After being introduced to Alteryx, one of our colleagues was looking for support in developing an app which could produce a C-Suite caliber monthly report, based on different inputs.
Describe the business challenge or problem you needed to solve:
As part of one of our projects at Aon Center for Innovation and Analytics (ACIA), we are leading the adoption of Alteryx amongst a group of client-facing colleagues that are not otherwise linked to the technology industry. The team at ACIA is demonstrating the Alteryx Platform’s ease of use and power while also providing training and support for their projects.
This has been a great opportunity to spread Alteryx usage within the wider organisation and outside of Ireland.
One of the participants of our training in the US requested our support in developing an app that could identify cross-sales opportunities for one of her clients, suggesting that Alteryx could create a repeatable and re-usable process for all client account teams.
The goal was to identify clients of a certain insurer who were not purchasing a given product with said insurer but are buying that product from competing insurers. These identified clients are invaluable for insurers looking to cross-sell and grow new business. The previous process to find such clients required numerous checks and sifting through large, high-latency Excel files which could result in ~7-8 hours of manual work per report. To extrapolate this inefficiency across the organisation:
20 colleagues independently run monthly reports for their respective clients in Excel
160 hours of people-power is expended in one month
160 hours = 4 total work weeks, 1 month of work overall to satisfy monthly requests
These colleagues are responsible for a multitude of client deliverables beyond cross-sales lists, and the team simply could not grow and best serve its clients using Excel given headcount and resourcing costs. Challenges such as these are universal to large businesses that do not actively seek or understand the innovative solutions available to them.
With a time-saving opportunity which aligned to our objectives of widening Alteryx usage across the organisation, the project presented itself as the perfect opportunity for our team.
Figure 1: Diagram exemplifying a cross sale opportunity
Describe your working solution:
Despite a tricky problem description, solving it with Alteryx was reasonably simple. First, filter clients of the given insurer who are not purchasing the target product, and out of these, identify clients purchasing the target product from competing insurers. (see Figure 1)
Once the solution was identified, we looked to generalize the solution. Using a previously developed macro allowing our colleague to query our database in Ireland, and another which generates a report template with the results, we transformed the solution in an app which was then published to Alteryx Gallery and shared with other colleagues.
Figure 2: Screenshot of the first app which makes the connection to the database
To delve into the details of the solution, our connection macro uses the In-DB tool to query our Redshift Database. With the app, we added several options for the user to customise the query, allowing for the solution to be re-used for other cross-sales opportunities. The solution also makes use of two chained apps, with the first extracting the available values for the user selection (i.e. available countries, products, dates, etc…) and the second using these values to drive the user selection and implementing the business logic. Finally, our output macro combines several of the reporting tools to create a standardised report, including dynamic titles, disclaimers and obviously, the results!
Figure 3: Interface Designer View
Interface designer view of the first app
Figure 4: Second part allows user to select target products and configure report title
Second App allows user to select their targets
Describe the benefits you have achieved:
After a few days of work on the app to develop, test, and validate the solution, we were able to make the app available to other colleagues who needed to produce similar reports. While there was an initial ‘cost’ of developing the app, the solution now allows a broker to save 7 to 8 hours of work per month by running the app in a few seconds. Across the global organisation, this conservatively saves 160 hours (4 work weeks) of people-power per month. As much as 2,000 hours were expended on repeating this one task in a year, with mixed accuracy result given human error.
Furthermore, the project allowed our colleague to be involved in the development of the app granting her more experience in using Alteryx and exposing her to new tools and more advanced uses such as the In-DB tools, chained apps, and the Alteryx Gallery. This experience has empowered her Alteryx skills and we expect it to facilitate future projects.
Based on time spent, the ROI (Return on Investment) is already highly valuable – however, the multinational collaboration and Alteryx knowledge sharing throughout this project will continue to pay dividends to the organisation.