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Our Culture of Innovation
Heather Masterson—President & CEO, Travelers Canada
Technology is changing the way the world does business. Today, everyone expects online experiences, seamless communication channels and anytime access to tools and data. Our traditional business models are being challenged by emerging technologies, new competitors and changing customer needs.  As customer expectations continue to be shaped by their experiences in other industries, we must do more as an industry to become faster, easier, more digital and more personalized.  Driving innovation isn’t new to Travelers—we’ve been on the cutting edge for more than 165 years. We have a history of firsts—from issuing accident policies for space flight and lunar exploration in 1969 to using drones to inspect damage to homes and commercial buildings after a storm in 2020 (every member of our CAT team is a certified drone pilot). This culture of innovation has become part of our DNA.  Our people bring an innovative mindset to everything they do, and we’re tapping into their unique ideas and pioneering spirit through annual hackathons, which we call Innovation Jams. Now in their fifth year, these events have engaged thousands of employees, inspired many practical solutions and led to nearly 30 patent applications.
Our 2019 Innovation Jam drew over 850 employees on 110 cross–functional teams across Canada, the US and the UK. And this year’s virtual hackathon in September may be our biggest yet, with more than 120 teams collaborating to develop the next new thing.
Across the organization, we’re pursuing an ambitious innovation agenda focused around three priorities: extending our advantage in risk expertise, improving our overall efficiency and creating great experiences for our customers and brokers. We expect these investments to yield tremendous results for us over the long term, ensuring that our competitive advantages remain as relevant and differentiating tomorrow as they are today. Using our state–of–the–art research and training facilities—like Claim University, National Catastrophe Centre and Forensic Labs—we continually evaluate risks and test how to mitigate those risks in order to shift the dynamic of helping customers recover from losses to helping them avoid losses in the first place. And our investment in data and analytics (we use more than 30 million data points each year) helps us identify emerging and future opportunities, so we can provide customers with the products and services they need to protect what’s important to them.   As we work to modernize and simplify our business, working on our business to transform it for the future has become as important as working in our business to continue to deliver results for customers, brokers and shareholders. Over the past few years we’ve made hundreds of system enhancements, streamlined workflows and introduced dozens of new tools. Looking ahead, we’ll continue to deliver a steady stream of innovative new products and services like our virtual home and auto inspections, Travelers OPTIMA® for Small Business, Travelers OPTIMA® Home and IntelliDrive®.
Insurance Brokers Association of Ontario
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