Strategic objectiveOur strategic objectives

Delivering excellent service to our customers at competitive cost levels by increasing scale and improving the quality, efficiency, and accuracy of our processes with technology.

Demonstrated by:

  • Together with four other insurance companies, Aegon launched the Blockchain insurance industry initiative B3i. This project will explore the potential for distributed ledger technologies to increase efficiency.
  • In the US, Transamerica announced three new variable annuity investment options that invest in Blackrock’s iShares smart investment funds. These funds help reduce risk, generate income and enhance returns by taking advantage of systematic biases or inefficiencies in the market.
  • Aegon’s joint venture GoBear is Asia’s only impartial meta-search engine for insurance and financial products. Just one year after launch, Go-Bear recorded double digit month-on-month growth rates, attracting increasing numbers of users that are looking for an un-biased comparison of different financial products and services. In 2016, more than 7.7 million users visited our website while close to one million users used our site to click through to the site of a provider or broker.
  • The Americas region is aiming for cost savings of $300 million by 2018. In addition, our operations in the Netherlands intend to realize cost savings of €50 million, and the holding €10 million by 2018.

What material issues do they link to?

  • New technologies and digital transformation

What performance indicators do we use?

  • Ratio of costs to assets
  • Ratio of costs to earnings
  • Reduction in operating expenses (this number is not in the scope of our audit)

How did we perform?

  • Ratio costs : assets: 0.47% (0.54%)
  • Ratio costs : earnings: 64.2% (64.7%)
  • Reduction in operating expenses by €110 million

*For comparison, figures in brackets represent 2015 figures.

Optimizing our activities

Watson returns an appropriate response to our Customer Service Representatives in seconds, saving them from memorizing the locations and contents of almost 1,000 stored documents.

 

CASE STUDY: A NEW WAY OF DOING BUSINESS

Identifying new ways to interact with and serve those who depend on our long-term financial solutions is central to our strategy. This means investing in new approaches, while at the same time finding ways to reduce costs and operate with greater efficiency.

Our US business, Transamerica, embarked on the first phase of implementing Watson, an IBM supercomputer application that combines Artificial Intelligence and analytical software as a ‘question answering’ machine.

Watson returns an appropriate response to our Customer Service Representatives in seconds, saving them from memorizing the locations and contents of almost 1,000 stored documents, any one of which may contain up to 100 pages of highly detailed product information.

The technology will significantly reduce handling time at our contact centers and put an end to customer queries being transferred to multiple departments.

The pilot is initially being used internally as the system’s learning algorithm continues to build its knowledge of Transamerica-specific products, services, synonyms and even speech nuances. As Glynis Coutee, Lead Global Architect, says: “Watson does not replace the human, it augments human knowledge to provide a better experience for our customers.”