Big Fix: Closing the Data Divide
Jennifer Overhulse | August 27, 2021
Challenges created by the human, economic, and political chaos of the global coronavirus pandemic are ongoing for all insurers. That means, in the midst of a pandemic and a hardening market, organic growth is difficult at best in the property/casualty space. And, with competition tough and getting tougher, the companies most likely to succeed in the current environment and the future are those figuring out how to differentiate based on partners, products, programs, services, technology, or a custom combination including all of the above.
“Without knowing what others are doing behind the curtain, so to speak, it is difficult to attract the best partners and customers,” says Robert Zerafa, COO for Transverse Insurance, a Princeton, N.J.-based hybrid-fronting carrier specializing in program business and providing a broad range of commercial and personal lines products through partnerships with managing general agencies, program administrators, and reinsurers.
Launched in 2018, today Transverse has offices in New York, New Jersey, and Texas and a team of insurance professionals with diverse backgrounds who connect and enable partners through access to risk capacity and alternative capital on admitted and surplus lines paper. Transverse actively collaborates with partners in all aspects of program administration and also provides underwriting, product development, actuarial and financial analysis, and regulatory and compliance expertise.
“It seems simple to say, but to compete and to continue adding unique value to our customers in the best way we possibly can, we needed access to more information,” Zerafa says. “You can’t manage what you can’t see.”
To solve this problem, Zerafa selected Cloverleaf Analytics to implement not only an out-of-the-box business intelligence solution designed specifically to handle the needs of competitive P&C insurance customers, but also a custom analytics solution which enables the Transverse team to easily identify opportunities within the company’s existing book of business. Today, Cloverleaf’s comprehensive BI solution provides Transverse access to real-time analytics which are used to identify trends and insights across the entire enterprise and which enable proactive business decisions that would not otherwise be possible.
“We are literally finding new ways of accessing and interpreting data for our insurance company clients, like Transverse, every day,” says Robert Clark, president of Cloverleaf. “Transverse is a solutions-oriented carrier providing multiple lines of business with risk management, underwriting, claims, reinsurance and compliance to fit the objectives of their partners. The Cloverleaf-Transverse BI solution reduces risk, improves profitability and performance, and consolidates enterprise data for real-time analytics and visualizations which drive underwriting efficiency, claims optimization, and better enterprise performance management through pre-built and ad hoc reporting capabilities.”
Throughout the development and implementation of the Cloverleaf-Transverse solution it was important for Transverse to gain the ability to better manage the product portfolio the company’s partners are writing, and Zerafa needed a better sense of what is being written, how it is being written, and how well partners are aligning with the terms or authorities Transverse is providing. Noting the compliance angle which Cloverleaf needed to take into account, more important was that the final solution allow Transverse to do custom visualizations. These visualizations now provide Zerafa’s team at-a-glance insights into where business is being placed from a low-level allocation and product perspective, and in a broader sense Transverse can also get a holistic view of how the company’s performance stacks up against past market performance.
“Past performance can absolutely provide guideposts for a better future,” Zerafa says. “We are choosing to use that information to proactively direct the business by identifying areas which are potentially more profitable or where we haven’t had exposure yet. The other piece of it, for partners with existing analytics, is that this solution allows us to continue to get insight and to extend insight and access through portals as a value-added service to our partners. Since we are all looking at the same data it helps us collaboratively steer away from unnecessary exposures, deliver cost savings through recommendations for operational efficiencies, and provide direction for development of new products which may be advantageous to our current and potential partners and customers.”
From the Transverse point of view, it is critical that the industry and the market know what the company is able to do with technology and data in terms of supercharging productivity and potential. Zerafa feels the Cloverleaf-Transverse solution is a big part of the company attracting new partners and new business, as it offers an easier way to share and interpret data together.
“This offering is a benefit for them and for us,” Zerafa says. “One of our driving goals has always been to be a program leader for our partners. For Transverse, it’s less around providing capacity and more about empowering partners, being easy to do business with and providing strategic value. Cloverleaf gives us the additional ability to share insights to help partners get value out of the program and products. If a partner doesn’t have access to insights and analytics like Cloverleaf delivers, this is especially valuable. It’s not about just being a capacity or fronting partner. We bring expertise and Cloverleaf helps us do that.”
At the end of the day, however, there is no crystal ball.
“No one is going to be 100 percent accurate or 100 percent successful, but at the end of the day you want to be off as little as possible,” Zerafa says. “We have an eye for risk and we are using analytics and data to validate our decisions or give our experts different ways to think about things. Thanks in large part to Cloverleaf, we’re making informed decisions about every risk that gets written, and all this gives reinsurers more comfort that Transverse’s programs will deliver and continue to perform as expected.”
Today, the Cloverleaf-Transverse BI solution has helped the company recognize strengths and find new ways to use those strengths strategically to benefit the entire insurance ecosystem, including partners. Going forward, Transverse and Cloverleaf will continue to work together to increase automation, to integrate Cloverleaf into the company’s partner collaboration portals for visualizations of letters of authority and rules of the road, and for performance monitoring of reinsurance placement.
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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.
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