Original Research

The function of competitive intelligence in South African insurance post-COVID-19 outbreak

Mpho L. Maluleka, Bibi Z. Chummun
South African Journal of Information Management | Vol 26, No 1 | a1738 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajim.v26i1.1738 | © 2024 Mpho L. Maluleka, Bibi Z. Chummun | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 06 July 2023 | Published: 19 January 2024

About the author(s)

Mpho L. Maluleka, Graduate School of Business and Leadership, College of Law and Management Studies, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa
Bibi Z. Chummun, Graduate School of Business and Leadership, College of Law and Management Studies, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa

Abstract

Background: Competitive intelligence (CI) involves monitoring competitors and providing organisations with actionable and meaningful intelligence. Some studies have focussed on the role of CI in other industries post-COVID-19 pandemic.

Objectives: This article aims to examine the impact of COVID-19 on the South African insurance sector and how the integration of CI and related technologies can sustain the South African insurance sector post-COVID-19 epidemic.

Method: Qualitative research with an exploratory-driven approach was used to examine the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the South African insurance sector. Qualitative secondary data analyses were conducted to measure insurance claims and death benefits paid during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Results: The research findings showed that the COVID-19 pandemic significantly impacted the South African insurance industry, leading to a reassessment of pricing, products, and risk management. COVID-19 caused disparities in death benefits and claims between provinces; not everyone was insured. Despite challenges, South African insurers remained well-capitalised and attentive to policyholders. Integrating CI and analytical technologies could enhance the flexibility of prevention, risk management, and product design.

Conclusion: COVID-19 requires digital transformation and CI for South African insurers’ competitiveness. Integrating artificial intelligence (AI), big data (BD), and CI enhances value, efficiency, and risk assessments.

Contribution: This study highlights the importance of integrating CI strategies and related technologies into South African insurance firms’ operations to aid in their recovery from the COVID-19 crisis. It addresses a research gap and adds to academic knowledge in this area.


Keywords

artificial intelligence; competitive intelligence; big data analytics; COVID-19 pandemic; insurance; South Africa.

JEL Codes

D00: General; D80: General; I23: Higher Education • Research Institutions

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 10: Reduced inequalities

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