IFRS 17: How IFRS 17 provides opportunities for your people

09 November 2020

by Katie Paton Director, PwC United Kingdom

Email +44 (0)7739 874071

IFRS 17 implementation requires a cultural shift, with new skills, changes to organisational structure and ways of working. By looking beyond the accounting challenge, there are transformational opportunities to be gained by putting your people at the heart of the change.

How to best bring your people together in the new structure?

The high levels of collaboration needed for IFRS 17 requires a re-think of how finance and actuarial teams work together to deliver IFRS 17 reporting. New roles and responsibilities must enable a knowledge sharing culture supported by internal structures. This will require a rethink to your current operating model - from the top to bottom - not just for the finance and actuarial functions, but the other areas of the business they interact with.

Your firm's culture is central to a successful IFRS 17 transformation, both during the implementation and afterwards. Consider how ways of working and behaviours are supported by what your people believe the organisation wants them to do and how. What are the critical behaviours you need from your people? How different is this from the culture today? How will your leaders role model these behaviours?

Recent months have shown how successful remote working can be - allowing teams to collaborate effectively without being based in the same office. With 52% of CFOs highlighting an intention to retain remote working permanently, leaders must consider location strategy and how to get the most from remote teams.

Are your teams equipped with the skills needed for IFRS17?

Redefining roles and responsibilities for IFRS17 poses the question - are your teams equipped with the skills and knowledge needed? Have you considered:

  • What capabilities are required?
  • How does this impact the current roles and responsibilities?
  • What is the employee proposition?

Identifying capability or skills gaps early is critical, giving you the opportunity to decide how to resolve any gaps - such as through recruitment or training.

Individuals need to be given the skills to be able to execute their role effectively to embed these changes. And training on new policies, new technologies, new KPIs and business metrics, changes in roles and new processes will all potentially have to be delivered remotely. So consider how to create a tailored learning environment, with targeted efforts to address skills and knowledge gaps, to deliver impactful learner journeys successfully.

How will your people lead the change?

It is important to be prepared and maintain momentum throughout your IFRS 17 transformation and avoid change fatigue. In particular, provide reassurance, a clear vision for the future and set expectations.

Have you considered:

  1. How to involve employees in the transformation? Do this as early as possible with a tailored approach to maximise buy in. Keep employees informed throughout the change and be clear on benefits, to ensure adoption of new processes and systems, as well as to prevent change resistance.
  2. How leadership will champion and lead the change? Ensure leadership are delivering regular communications which provide employees with a common understanding of the goals.
  3. How will you use feedback and real time data? Get feedback throughout, host drop in clinics and pulse check surveys to identify any blockers or change fatigue.

IFRS 17 is more than an accounting issue. As employers, you need to put your people at the core of the transformation. By bringing employees on the journey, with clear messaging about the impact of changes and a plainly outlined vision for the future, you will be well placed for success.

We are here to help - please get in touch if you would like to discuss further.

- IFRS17: What is the impact on people?
- How will the power of your people drive your digital transformation?
- CBI/PwC Financial Services Survey Q3 2020 Results
- 100% remote: managing teams working from home
- IFRS17: New Measures, New Perspective
- Adjust your IFRS17 implementation to consider Adjusted Operating Profit (AOP)
- New World, New Skills

by Katie Paton Director, PwC United Kingdom

Email +44 (0)7739 874071

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