SummerHack 2021: Developing New Insurance Solutions in Just 2 Days

It’s almost time to kickoff SummerHack 2021: Global Insurance Design Thinking Ideathon!  

This global event brings together InsurTech experts and innovators from all over the world for 2 days of exciting insurance innovation and friendly competition. Our teams will tackle challenges related to the theme “New Times, New Experience”, and under the guidance and support of our Certified Innovation Experts, use Design Thinking to develop creative solutions to present to our esteemed panel of judges at the Final Pitch Event

To help you prepare for our upcoming virtual Ideathon, we’ve put together this quick guide on how to disrupt the insurance industry using Design Thinking in time for the big deadline! 

Before We Begin 

If you’re new to Design Thinking, visit “Introduction to Design Thinking”, where we describe the concept behind the methodology and the stages involved. 

How to Use Design Thinking at SummerHack 2021 

While the Design Thinking stages may sound time-consuming, it’s possible to walk through each of them within a short timeframe. As a reminder, our Innovation Team will be available via regular check-in calls during the event to answer any questions and provide support on how to follow Design Thinking to develop impactful solutions. Please note that each check-in calls will be held between 9 AM to 5 PM in three different time zones — Eastern Daylight Time (EDT), Central European Summer Time (CEST), and Singapore Time (SGT). 

So, how can you use Design Thinking to create a winning solution in just 2 days

Below, we share a quick guide on how you can structure your time according to the stages in the Design Thinking methodology to help you conquer SummerHack 2021 and blow our judges away! 

Tuesday, May 18, 2021  
10:45 AM – Empathize 

At 10:00 AM, the Cookhouse Labs team will announce our “New Times, New Experience” challenges and you will have 2 days to create your solution for your chosen challenge! 

After you select your challenge, your Design Thinking journey begins with the first stage, Empathize. This is where you will begin to understand your target group, which can be done in 2 ways: internet research and interviews with your persona. You can’t create a customer-centric solution without putting yourself in the shoes of the customer, and a good way to do this is to speak directly with the potential customer and listen

Deliverables: By the end of this stage, you will have: 

  • An Empathy Map to help you visualize how the user thinks/feels and documents their pain points 
  • Your Persona, a character that represents the type of customer/user of your solution. For example, in our last project about mitigating small business bankruptcy, we created the persona of Fiona, a small business owner in Toronto  

1st Check-In: Our Innovation Experts will be available from 10:45 AM to 11:15 AM! 
 

2:00 PM – Define 

The next stage focuses on constructing a point of view based on the user’s needs. Here, you will take time to reflect on what the user has shared with you and to visualize their experience. By doing so, you can define what problem you are trying to solve based on your persona’s main needs and pain points, which will help you shape a better experience for the user. 

Deliverables: By the end of this stage, you will have: 

  • Journey Map, which is a narrative of your user’s steps to accomplish a specific goal. This is mapped out in 2 layers: a timeline of the user’s actions and their thoughts/emotions while completing each task. You want to identify areas where the user encounters obstacles or barriers along their journey 
  • How Might We (HMW) statement, a brief statement presented in form of a question that clarifies the actual problem you are focusing on based on the Journey Map and identifies the benefits and gains the solution. In the same project about bankruptcy mitigation, our team created 20 HMW statements and selected, “How might we reduce the risk of financial impact of current economic events?” and as they moved through interviews and customer journey the focus of their project became “How might we use the Internet of Things to assist small business owners with their Financial management, improve profitability and reduce bankruptcy?”. (Notice the benefits and gains in bold)

2nd Check-In: Our Innovation Experts will be available from 2:00 PM to 2:30 PM! 
 

4:30 PM – Design 

After selecting a single HMW statement to focus on, it’s time to ideate! This stage is all about connecting to your inner child and using your imagination to come up with multiple solutions to the problem your team identified. Quantity is important here, so remember to list as many possibilities as you can! 

Deliverables: By the end of this stage, you will have: 

  • Multiple possible solutions to tackle the challenge in various timeframes 
  • chosen idea to begin prototyping! 

3rd Check-In: Our Innovation Experts will be available from 4:30 PM to 5:00 PM! 

5 PM – Networking

At the end of Day 1, participants are invited to join us for an hour of networking with other innovators and our jury panel!


 

Wednesday, May 19, 2021  
11:00 AM – Create 

Once your team has voted on a winning idea, you are now ready to build a Minimum Viable Product (MVP). You will begin by creating a low-fidelity prototype, which could take the form of a sketch, Excel spreadsheet, or PowerPoint presentation.  

Deliverables: By the end of this stage, you will have: 

  • sketch of your Lo-Fi prototype to help visualize and test the solution 

4th Check-In: Our Innovation Experts will be available from 11:00 AM to 11:30 AM! 

 
3:30 PM – Presentation

In a little over 2 hours, you will submit your final solution!  

At this time, you should begin to practice your pitch and prepare any materials required (such as PowerPoint slides). Remember, you will have to submit a 4-minute video of your pitch to play for our panel of judges, who will ask you follow-up questions right after!  

Deliverables: By the end of this stage, you will have: 

  • Submitted your pitch video on our platform, including a brief description and all supporting materials 
  • Prepared for questions from our judges at our Final Pitch Event beginning at 8:00 AM EDT 

5th Check-In: Our Innovation Experts will be available from 3:30 PM to 4 PM! 

5 PM – Networking

At the end of Day 2, we will hold another open networking session for participants and judges to come together to celebrate crossing the finish line!


 

To provide even further support, our Innovation Team has prepared an Introduction to Design Thinking video to introduce you to the methodology and on the day of the event, you will have access to breakout sessions where our experts will explain in more detail each phase of the methodology. They will also be available to answer any questions. 

And with that, you are now ready to disrupt the insurance industry!  

We wish all our teams the best of luck for SummerHack 2021! We invite our community members to join the Final Pitch Event on Thursday, May 20th at 8:00 AM EDT to see the exciting solutions our teams of insurers, startups, and student innovators develop.  

To receive an invite, please register here. 

Cookhouse Labs Opens its First Open Innovation InsurTech Hub in Europe

Cookhouse Labs First Hub in Europe

Toronto, Canada, May 13, 2021 – Cookhouse Labs, the leading collaborative and innovation space where the global insurance community comes together to co-create solutions to make insurance better, announced today the official opening of its first European hub in Utrecht, Netherlands. 

Cookhouse Labs has always brought the unique experience of open collaboration from its North American flagship lab in downtown Toronto to the insurance community around the globe through pop-up labs across Europe and virtual co-creation events. With the increase in virtual collaborations brought on by the pandemic, Cookhouse Labs recognized the need for global insurance innovation but with an element of local interaction by operating through a hybrid model, combining both virtual and physical hubs to bring the global insurance community closer together. 

“Having organized more virtual collaborations due to the pandemic situation, it allowed us to reach an even broader global audience and more than ever, we see the need for a more holistic global collaboration within the insurance community,” says Sven Roehl, Co-Founder of Cookhouse Labs and Head of Innovation at msg global. “The future will be hybrid and that is why we decided that in addition to providing a virtual innovation space, we will open physical Cookhouse Labs hubs around the world, starting with Europe in the Netherlands.” 

Cookhouse Labs Utrecht: Meet the New Chefs

Cookhouse Labs Utrecht is uniquely located in a charming old Dutch house that has been converted into an office and innovation space, along with picturesque views of the waterway canals. The new hub in Utrecht, which takes less than 30 min to reach from Amsterdam, will be the first of many to follow. Cookhouse Labs plans to open regional hubs across Europe, Asia and Latin America to provide an innovation space for insurers across the globe to collaborate, network and come together to address solutions to current and future problems in the insurance industry. 

“Cookhouse Labs was born out of the idea of creating a global insurance community, by bringing great minds together to shape the future of insurance through open collaboration, co-creation and Design Thinking,” shares Peter Umscheid, CEO of msg global solutions. “We believe that these are the key ingredients in accelerating the insurance industry to make insurance better. Therefore, we are excited to bring our unique open collaboration model to Europe, to create an innovative space for the insurance community to come together and tackle the challenges using latest technologies, such as AI, IoT, blockchain or simply by improving existing processes as an industry.” 

Since its founding in 2017, Cookhouse Labs, owned by msg global solutions, has innovated with over 100 insurance organizations across 20 countries to tackle challenges the Life and P&C insurance is and will be facing, focusing on technologies such as IoT, blockchain and artificial intelligence among many others. Current and future members of Cookhouse Labs can expect a global membership model with full access to facilitated co-creation projects, innovation initiatives masterclasses at a regional hub location of their choosing – from Toronto, Utrecht and future lab locations. 

For media, membership or collaboration enquires, contact Insiya Meherally, Community Manager at Insiya.Meherally.ext@msg-global.com.

To find out more about Cookhouse Labs membership benefits, click here.

About Cookhouse Labs  

Inspired by a test kitchen, Cookhouse Labs is a collaborative space for innovative chefs, Tastemakers and taste-testers to create recipes, infuse flavours, and experiment beyond boundaries. Our community of insurance innovators and insurtech experts is the key ingredient in the ideation process, empowering and integrating a global collection of ideas with Design Thinking to serve innovation in the insurance industry, based on a paid membership model. To learn more about Cookhouse Labs, visit: www.cookhouselabs.com.  

About msg global solutions  

msg global solutions is a systems integrator, software development partner, and managed services provider focused on SAP solutions for accounting, finance, regulatory reporting, performance management, and customer experience. Operating from offices across the globe and growing, our expert teams help clients achieve operational efficiency and improve decision-making capabilities. While the heart of our expertise is in the financial services sector, our solutions are utilized in a wide range of industries. We’re part of msg, an independent, international group of companies with more than 8,500 employees around the world. These companies offer a broad spectrum of creative, strategic consulting and intelligent, sustainable services and value-added IT solutions. To learn more about msg global solutions, visit: www.msg-global.com.