What You Don't Do Can Hurt You
Michael Sauber | March 25, 2014
In 2013, technology initiatives designed to phase out or modernize legacy core administration systems finally moved from “potential” to “reality” for many insurers. Simply put, with growing consumer and industry demand for accessibility, greater agility and increased integration, insurers were finally forced to act.
Core administration modernization projects are complex and risk-laden, and forward-thinking insurers have learned to tackle scope creep with agile development, and use modern configuration tools to put more control into the hands of business analysts. However, other factors that could make or break a core systems project, like the inclusion of customer communication management (CCM) for flexible, rapid, and cost-effective creation and distribution of policies and related documents, are often overlooked.
Understandably, just as insurers must concentrate on core competencies to achieve success, core administration systems must do the same. Policy administration systems focus on policy processing, claims administration systems focus on managing claims, and billing systems focus on invoicing new and renewing policies, as well as payment processing. Most of these core administration systems therefore lack the robust document design, production and distribution functionality of a standalone CCM solution.
By incorporating a CCM system into core administration modernization projects at the outset, insurers gain efficiencies from full integration. Plus, business users gain a powerful tool for document creation, customers gain user-friendly personalization features, and insurers easily expand document distribution options to include digital channels.
Complement Don’t Complicate
Industry failure rates for core administration system replacement projects typically hover around 70 percent, and are certainly driven by vendor missteps, scope creep and conversion challenges, but also by the inability of the project’s results to meet both executive and customer expectations. This clearly means any addition to such a complex initiative must complement, and not complicate, the overall goal.
The best CCM solutions are designed to integrate easily and seamlessly with core administration systems, provide business user friendliness, and greater functionality than a core administration system alone, factors which accelerate implementation, increase user adoption, and boost executive confidence levels.
Furthermore, CCM systems streamline internal operations by automating the production of customized content from within an insurer’s core administration system. This means data from many systems converges in a single stream, ensuring pertinent customer information is instantly accessible from a centralized location.
Once a serious consideration, price alone no longer drives competitive advantage. Today’s insurer must rapidly react to market conditions, make rate changes, adjust underwriting rules to company appetite, and push form updates into the system. In a 24x7x365, “gotta-have-it-now” society, insurers with legacy core systems are limited in their ability to move quickly.
The entry of Gen X and Gen Y consumers into the insurance marketplace, with high expectations for personalization, accessibility, product features, and customer service, magnifies the need for insurers to modernize. Including CCM in this process provides a key link between core administration systems and the customer.
CCM puts a “where you want it, when you want it, how you want it” face on what is often seen as a mundane element of the customer relationship, and accelerates production of mission-critical quotes, policies, renewal notices, and claim documents.
Empowering Distribution Channels
Insurers today are rightly focused on quickly producing quotes and closing new business, but should be prepared to place equal emphasis on delivering a positive customer experience. While core administration systems excel at completing specific tasks or transactions, they typically have meager abilities to boost the customer experience.
CCM, on the other hand, draws disparate data from multiple systems into a single process to facilitate creation of more personalized content and messaging through preferred delivery channels, and ultimately, more timely responses. In addition to phone calls and agent interactions, insurers now commonly rely on email, mobile/web, instant messaging, online chats, and social media channels to communicate with customers. By combining the talents of CCM with the strengths of core administration systems, insurers can guarantee a better experience for the customer, through their distribution channel of choice.
In Addition Not Instead
It’s easy for insurers to become overwhelmed by the scope and scale of core administration modernization and overlook an important aspect, such as CCM. However, when completed as part of the overall project, CCM can improve the outcome by producing a greater level of personalization and customization, streamlining communications and document creation, and integrating with back-end systems to keep everything working in lockstep.
Modern CCM solutions can be easily tailored to an insurer’s specific needs depending on line of business written, distribution channels utilized, and geographic regions served. The bottom line: Implementing CCM in tandem with a core administration system modernization initiative reduces your overall project failure risk and enhances your ability to catch up—and keep up—with customer demand.
- Enterprise Architecture in an Agile World
- Top 10 Tips for Securing Your Mobile Devices and Sensitive Client Data
- Industry Insight: 4 Global Insurance Trends in Digital, Data, Content Services and Security
- Diving Deeper into Prioritizing Your Strategic Digital investments
- Why Content Rules
- How Mass Personalization Will Open the Small Business Benefits Market
- At Year End 2017, Will Your Organization Be Protected from Cyber Risks?
- Do Insurance Bots Dream of Mitigating Risk?
- Conditioned to Respond
- Managing & Mobilizing Insurance Data in a Connected World
- Race to the Finish Line
- New Tools, New Opportunities in Claims
- ITA LIVE: Reaching Insurance Industry Crossroads
- Advice to Insurance IT Leaders: Keep Your Eye on the Ball
- New Date, Venue for ITA LIVE 2017
- Guidewire Makes Major Push to Small and Midtier Market by Acquiring ISCS
- Insurance Disruption is Happening Right Now
- Insurity Adds Strategic Investment Partner, General Atlantic
- Beyond Transformation: The Convergence of Finance, Risk, and Actuarial Functions
- The Rapid Evolution of Consumer Protection Regulation
- Talent Hunt: Finding, Attracting, Retaining Top People
- Insurers Flexing Their Distribution Models
- Technology Driving Disruption in Insurance
- Fear of ‘Next Bubble’ Challenges Life, Annuity Carriers
- Technology Allows Commercial Lines Insurers to Stand Out
- Single Sign-on Viewed as Biggest Tech Challenge for Agencies
- ISCS Observes 20th Anniversary; Scurto Predicts Major Changes Ahead
- Policyholders and Their First Impressions
- Progressive Making Progress on the UBI Front
- High and Dry: Insurers Search for Disaster Recovery Plans
- Insurers Sign The (Un)Dotted Line
- Reflections of a Retired Insurance CIO
- Mobile Device Management Just One Answer to BYOD Issue
- Lessons from GEICO and Progressive on Winning the Critical Buying Stage
- You Are a Target for a Cyber Attack
- Web-based Systems are the Next Evolution in Claims Technology
- Gaining a “Wow” Experience from Web Users
- Time to Shift from Business/IT Alignment to Business/IT Alliance
- Healthcare Insurers Changing to Consumer Model
- Organization is the Key for Selecting Software Vendors
- Analysts Expound on the Needs of the Mid-tier Insurance Market
- Finding the Cure for Obamacare’s Website
- New Software Solutions Benefit Insurers on the Inside and Outside
- Products, Market Impede Investment in Systems for Life Insurers
- Combatting Cyber Threats: Predict, Prevent, Persist
- The Future of Telematics Heads Beyond Insurance
- The Shame in Cyber Security Lapses
- Building Policy Administration Systems for the Future
- Insurers Look Into The Eyes of Their Policyholders
- It’s a New Dawn for the ITA
INSURANCE IT NEWS
- Tower Selects EIS Group’s Insurance Platform to Drive Transformation
- NTUC Income Selects Majesco Distribution Management and Majesco Digital Solutions to Advance its Distribution Management Operation
- Emerson Reid Modernizes Its Business Processes With VUE Software
- Octo Telematics Powers CAA MyPace™ Pay-As-You-Go Program
- Announcing the Solartis Insure Microservice Hackathon
- DataCubes Completes Plug and Play Tech Accelerator Program
- Medical Mutual of Ohio Implements One Inc Digital Payments
- SUNZ Insurance in Production with Sapiens’ Workers’ Compensation CompSuite® Policy System
The Email Chat is a regular feature of the ITA Pro magazine and website. We send a series of questions to an insurance IT leader in search of thought-provoking responses on important issues facing the insurance industry.
ITA is pleased to present the 2014 Webinar Series. We have many topics for you to choose from and attendance is open to all ITA members. The webinar topics are current and exciting — ranging from predictive analytics to telematics and will focus on the direction insurance carriers need to follow for the future. All webinars are presented by insurance IT professionals along with some of the leading analysts and consultants in the field. There is no cost to attend an ITA webinar. For more information and to register for the webinar, click the “title” of the webinar below.
BLOGS AND COLUMNS
It has become a common refrain over the past few years to view the practice of enterprise architecture (EA) as something that time has passed by, much... READ MORE
One important trend in society over the past decade is our increasing ability to create and consume a seemingly unlimited amount of digital content... READ MORE
You have surely heard it said that small businesses are the growth engine for America. Today, the phrase has a special ring to it for benefits... READ MORE
With stagnant growth and lingering low interest rates, the life insurance industry faces a challenging future... READ MORE
Finding insurance carriers willing to write commercial lines risks has always been a challenge for producers... READ MORE
As Guidewire Software prepares for the start of Connections, its 11th annual user conference that begins on Nov. 2, Brian Desmond, chief marketing... READ MORE
Fraud detection has always been and will continue to be a critical component of claims management. Learning the lessons from current claims Straight... READ MORE
- Vendor Views