Driving Innovation: The CAS Accelerator

CAS Innovation - CAS Accelerator My agenda for the CAS has been focused on our future and living up to the aspirations of our current and future members, and our various supporters and constituents. We certainly have challenges: We work in an environment that is questioning traditional business models, is experimenting with new and transformative technologies, and is redefining the needed skill sets.

If we are going to keep pace with an ever-changing environment we need a better approach than waiting to see what sticks. But how can we be effective and efficient in trying out new ideas in order to keep ourselves current and relevant? How do we break from traditional approaches, expand our skills and adopt or adapt to new technologies or new thinking? To answer these questions, the CAS must embrace innovation and take professional networking to new levels.

Innovation and the CAS Accelerator

Last year we established the CAS Innovation Council, whose mission is to focus on our future by tapping the ingenuity, creativity and inventiveness of our members and staff in a way that will accelerate our insights and ideas in order to drive an innovation agenda.

In February, our Innovation Council Co-Chairs, Aaron Halpert and Kevin Bingham, set up an innovation workshop. The goal of the workshop was to think through how the innovation process should be designed specifically for the CAS mission and vision. Our work started with drafting the CAS Innovation Point of View, as the workshop group explored how and why we should think about innovation. Next,  after brainstorming what is most important to us (creating value, collaborating with others, investing in our future, looking for opportunities, learning by experimentation and accepting the risk of failure while controlling the downside) the CAS Innovation Principles of Action were developed. These explorations culminated with design ideas for the CAS Accelerator, which will act as our timer for our 90-day timeframe, as well as our process model for decision making on new ideas and insights.

All About That Network

Through my travels with groups of actuaries working for large employers, I have realized that they have very good resources to support their actuarial careers within their organizations. However, we should also start tapping into widespread actuarial skill and knowledge through our professional networks and online connections. The value of tapping shared professional knowledge from online connections is real and growing. It is important to think about how big we can grow our professional networks and what level of interconnectedness we can achieve.

Your Ideas Wanted!

I am excited about using the CAS Accelerator to couple an excellent innovation process with our collective professional networks. To be successful, however, the CAS Accelerator calls for thoughtful suggestions. We need your input on how the CAS can help you and your connections make the most of professional networks in advancing actuarial work and careers. Please share your ideas and suggestions by leaving a comment below. 


About Bob Miccolis

Bob Miccolis is the Immediate Past President of the Casualty Actuarial Society and chair of the CAS Board of Directors. He also serves as chair of the CAS Institute Leadership Advisory Council.