After more than 20 years of deliberations, the IFRS 17 standard is now in its final stages of implementation. It will significantly change how insurers account for insurance contracts and will impact how finance, as well as the wider business, assesses financial performance.
Based on industry feedback, the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) has proposed to delay the effective date of IFRS 17 by one year, until January 1, 2022. Although this gives insurers breathing room to achieve compliance, some insurers will still struggle to meet the deadline.
This extra year is a good opportunity for insurers to reconsider their program's ambitions. Will it be a compliance-only exercise, or can the time be used to achieve additional benefits on top of the IFRS 17 requirements? I think the latter is possible, by focusing not only on meeting the minimum requirements but also considering the digital and analytical solutions that can accelerate processes and bring deeper insights on financial performance.