InsurTech Interviews

Global Fintech Interview with Shivani Govil, CPO at CCC Information Services

Global Fintech Interview with Shivani Govil, CPO at CCC Information Services

Hi Shivani, please tell us about your role and the team/technology you handle at CCC.

CCC is a leading SaaS platform powering the multi-trillion-dollar P&C insurance economy. I joined the company in early March as Chief Product Officer (CPO) to lead product strategy, product management, and marketing. My goal is to advance the company’s vision of delivering cutting-edge solutions to customers across the industry.

Today, the CCC Cloud connects 30,000 businesses, including insurers, automakers, collision repairers, parts suppliers, lenders, and more. We improve the auto claims experience for millions of policyholders annually. We help insurance companies simplify and streamline the auto claims process, to increase efficiency and deliver greater customer satisfaction. We enable repair shops to accelerate the repair process, through diagnostics, electronic parts procurement, access to repair methods, and more.

As CPO, I will drive scale and accelerate the development and delivery of next-generation innovations that will help our customers achieve their digital transformation objectives.

How did you arrive at the company? What were the key milestones in your career that helped you scale to this level?

I am an engineer by education and have a deep passion for technology innovations. What I get really excited about is when that technology is applied to solve specific user pain points or to create entirely new solutions that deliver meaningful value.

My career has been a wonderful progression of experiences that put me in a position to have a positive and lasting impact on CCC and the industry we serve together.

I started my career as a management consultant where I learned the importance of strong business fundamentals. From there, I worked for two Silicon Valley startups. These environments showed me how to move fast, be nimble, and think differently about how to solve customer’s business challenges. The entrepreneurial ethos from that work is something I have embraced throughout my career, even as I sought roles that would allow me to deliver at a global scale. This was the nature of my work at SAP, where I held multiple roles including global vice president for SAP Ariba’s AI product portfolio, launching products across a network of three million buyers and suppliers. And, before coming to CCC, I was executive vice president at Sage Software, the UK’s largest publicly held software company. At Sage, I led product management, engineering, and business development for the company’s Cloud/SaaS products and its open partner ecosystem, delivering solutions to over 3M businesses across the globe.

This work and my passion for making an impact led me to CCC, a company that connects a vast ecosystem of providers to help keep people’s lives moving forward when it matters most. When exploring opportunities, I had three requirements: (i) I wanted to work in an industry where I could have an impact on people’s lives; (ii) I wanted to work at a company that was hungry for using the best technology available to develop great products, helping to transform an industry; and (iii) I wanted to work with people and in a culture that shared my values for authenticity and excellence. CCC checked all the boxes. I am excited and energized to apply my knowledge and experience to drive the future success of CCC as we enter an exciting new phase of growth.

Also Read: Global Fintech Interview with Dennis Gada, SVP and Head of Financial Services, North America at Infosys

What is the most contemporary definition of “Product management” for the fintech industry’s POV?

Product management is the key function responsible for delivering great products within modern organizations. It is a complex role, and one that must bridge strong business acumen and technical expertise.

Product management (PM) defines the product vision and strategy based on input from both internal and external stakeholders. PM applies their learnings when developing and prioritizing product requirements and working closely with technical teams to build out solutions. Product managers need to think about user experiences, building products that delight end uses, and they must think ahead, developing roadmaps and sharing their plans both inside and outside of the organization.

At CCC, customer collaboration is built into our process for building product. Our product teams partner with our customer teams, receiving real-time feedback on solutions and input on challenges and priorities. This allows us to iterate and evolve product that meet or exceed market needs.

What kind of IT and data management infrastructure should a company have to successfully plan a fintech product development /launch? 

Fintech, and the insurtech space CCC operates within, are moving quickly and have tremendous demands for digital transformation. A few basic things every company in this space needs to plan for are (i) speed and scale; (ii) data management; and (iii) security and privacy.

Speed, scale, and flexibility are key requirements across the industry. CCC moved into the cloud nearly 10 years ago and today have a 100 percent multi-tenant cloud. This has allowed us to deploy new solutions and enhancements in an agile way, keeping us at the forefront of technology innovation in the industry. In 2020, we delivered more than 1400 releases, among them was the introduction of photo estimating capabilities for our collision repair customers. This offering proved to be essential as repairers needed to deliver contact-free experiences as COVID-19 took hold of the country. We also introduced more applications of AI, supporting and speeding auto estimating decisions.

Other dimensions critical for fintech IT infrastructure are data management and security. Data is often called the new gold. Yet the constant challenge most businesses face is how to get access to good clean data and manage it effectively, ensuring that the data is handled with the right oversight – both regulatory and privacy. From a security perspective, it is critical to protect your systems and information.

Tell us more about your plans at CCC and how these would help your company garner more customers in the P&C insurance economy.

In the few short weeks that I have been with the company, it’s clear CCC has best in-class technology and a commitment for applying it in ways that support our customers’ objectives. Our customers feel this passion too, evidenced by CCC’s world-class net promoter score of 80 – a rating of not just customer satisfaction, but of a customer’s likelihood to refer your products to others.

My role at CCC is to fuel the next generation of innovations by looking for opportunities to further optimize the experience for our customers so they can do the same for theirs.

For example, within the P&C insurance industry, we hear our customers talk about digitization and straight-through processing – these are some of the areas of innovation we are building out with the explicit goal to accelerate time-to-resolution within the auto claims and repair process.

To achieve this, we are digitizing and automating more steps across the claims process. Let’s say a policyholder gets into an accident. We enable the insurer to deliver an estimate for the damage to their customer within minutes using digital techniques like mobile and photos for initiating claims, combined with our powerful AI for understanding the extent of damage and providing estimates. Through the network across our ecosystem, the insurer can offer their policyholder information on nearby repair facilities who can take care of the repairs for them. And, by allowing the repair facilities to have access to the same photos, they can prepare their repair plans earlier, understanding what parts may be needed, or reviewing repair methods that may need to be applied.

We believe CCC is uniquely positioned to deliver these capabilities to our customers because of our product strategy. The foundational elements of data and cloud, our ability to leverage advanced technology such as AI and IoT, and the vast network of players across our CCC Cloud, combine to create a holistic approach to solving our customers challenges and goals for digital transformation.

I want to underline the importance of the network. Let me take an example to illustrate. Many of us order food for delivery through an app. There is a large network operating behind the scenes to make it possible – the network of restaurants and cuisines; the network of drivers for delivery so as to find the right driver to bring us the food in a timely manner; the payment networks; the network of suppliers to the restaurant. The success of such apps is a result of the network working together to create one experience for the customer. If we had to do any step offline – for example, ordering the food and then separately finding a person who can deliver it – the experience would be greatly diminished and result in poor adoption.  Similarly, the strong network of connections across our CCC Cloud platform including automakers, insurance carriers, repair shops, parts suppliers, lenders, and more come together to create one experience for our customers to deliver consumers across the entire claims process.

Also Read: Global Fintech Interview with Andrew Butt, Co-founder and CEO at Enable

How do you see AI ML and Cloud computing platforms scaling from here? How would these computing trends in data management and security practices evolve with the increased adoption of AI ML applications?

AI and ML aren’t new, they’ve been with us for many decades. However, AI depends on access to good data. Over the last several years, there has been an explosion of data – across all dimensions such as velocity, variety, and volume. At the same time, the cost of storing data has gone down significantly and computer power has grown rapidly. All of these changes have resulted in a much broader application of AI to multiple use cases. There is a lot of investment going into algorithms and model development for generic uses, such as computer vision, image recognition, and so one, so you don’t need to reinvent the wheel to put this information to work. The talent pool has also grown and today we have more people who are knowledgeable on these topics and can work in building even more algorithms. So, I see these platforms continuing to scale dramatically.

We are using AI widely at CCC. Our AI supports the processing of millions of auto claims annually and we harness data from over $1 trillion of historical claims. For example, through computer vision and image classification, technology can power the creation of an initial estimate, ready for appraiser review. The insurer adoption of our AI technology has increased at a rate of 50 percent year over year in 2020. Today, more than 75 auto insurers are actively applying CCC’s advanced AI to their claims process to improve policyholder experiences.

Similarly, processing in an automated way also requires having the right checks and balances to ensure your business is performing optimally. Our AI driven fraud detection as well as smart flags can identify outliers for closer review before they go through any process. For example, garage location, and pre-existing damage can be identified early in the process.

Through IoT and telematics, driving data from connected cars allows us to analyze and understand driving behavior, which can inform underwriting of insurance policies. Similarly, in the case of an accident, by getting crash data, we can understand the magnitude of the accident, and the change in force of impact, that allows us to predict the expected damage from the collision.

You also asked about security. Security is going to be increasingly important and gets more attention every day as more processes are digitized and as more information is stored digitally. For decades, CCC has been a trusted data provider to the industry, and we will continue to be vigilant.

Your prediction on the “future of IT / Cloud Management platforms – how are you planning for the future at CCC?

At CCC, we are building a strong foundation with the right structures and assets that allow us to create solutions for customers to enable them to take advantage of the latest tech capabilities today and into the future.

To achieve this vision, we start with data and the cloud as the foundational building blocks. We layer this with advanced technology such as AI and IoT and combine this with capabilities such as customer experience, workflow and network management.

Through IoT and telematics, we process data from connected cars, mobile phones, or OBD devices to understand driving behavior. This in turn can inform insurance policies or apply crash data from an accident to the management of repairs or casualty claims.

Our customer experience capabilities allow collision repair facilities to engage with their customers using their preferred mode of interaction – Chat, Voice, Mobile, or Web.

Workflow technologies enable processes in the repair facility or the claims department to happen seamlessly, tied to the sequence of steps that customers need to meet their business objectives. And network management technology allows us to connect and orchestrate interactions across OEMs, insurance carriers, repair shops, parts dealers, lenders, and more.

CCC combines all this with an open platform so as to build an infrastructure for a vast ecosystem to come together and deliver a continuous experience to their customers.

Could you tell us about your remote workplace technology stack and how these tools help you in your product lifecycle management/marketing?

As a company, CCC has built an infrastructure to support a strong, established virtual workforce with a large percentage of employees working from home pre-pandemic. Most of our business systems are cloud-based and can be actively monitored from home by our technology teams. And, as you would expect, we have sophisticated video-conferencing services that allow our employees to communicate and collaborate internally and with our customers.

In 2020, a big focus of our work was to use the CCC Cloud and our digital solutions to help our customers move to a remote style of working, powering their ability to maintain operations and support their end consumer with digital auto estimating, and collision repairer services.

Any advice to every CIO / CISO looking to adopt/upgrade cloud platforms in 2021?

I find that thinking big and looking broadly at your business goals – not just for today but also for the future, can have a big impact. Having a vision, even if implementation and execution happens in stages, will position companies to succeed more effectively. Also, look at where to do things directly and where to partner – based on what is core to the business and what is context. CIOs and CISOs might ask themselves and their teams what available platforms and technologies can future-proof their business, maximizing investments and supporting long-term competitive differentiation.

Tag a person from the industry whose answers you would like to read here: 

Cam McNaught, AWS

Also Read: Global Fintech Interview with Alexander George Muthoot, Deputy Managing Director at Muthoot Finance

Thank you, Shivani! That was fun and we hope to see you back on soon.

Shivani Govil is a Chief Product Officer at CCC Information Services

CCC Information Services Logo

CCC is transforming the trillion-dollar automotive and insurance industries through the power and scale of our connected data platform.

Our cloud-based SaaS solutions leverage the latest in AI, IoT, telematics, customer experience, mobile and digital workflow technologies to create deep, actionable insights that help our clients drive business and change lives.

CCC has continued to innovate throughout its 40-year history, building scale through its extensive client partnerships while delivering industry leading first-to-market solutions.

Connection powers everything we do, from our people to our products. From our team of world-class engineers and data scientists, to our account managers and customer support teams, we all play a role in challenging the status quo and envisioning new ways of working. We’re committed to helping our employees make the kind of connections that build meaningful careers. As a leader within the tech industry, we are also committed to taking practical steps to be inclusive and transparent when it comes to new job opportunities, learning and development, and career advancement. We support a continuous learning environment, empowering employees to innovate, lead, and bring their ideas to life.

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