We think the insurance industry offers opportunities to the IT channel.
This sector has reportedly been suffering huge losses for years. The current claims system it uses is allegedly outdated and slow.
Your average underwriting department, to underwrite a single claim, will require details existing not just over multiple systems, but over paper files scattered across various departments too. This is awkward and slow for both insurer and customer, and hard to keep accurate tabs on what particular stage the underwriting process is at.
Meanwhile, insurers are under greater pressure to return greater profits, become more efficient and provide the best service in the hope of hanging on to their customers.
Resellers can offer a specialist service-based infrastructure and business process management, which I think is fundamental if insurers are to get greater visibility and control.
Insurers need a system that can collate data and provide access from an integrated, simple application. An integrated front-end application can offer increased transparency and visibility.
A united back-end can help insurers migrate online. This allows customers to track claims via a web portal, saving on call centre costs.
It must work well with existing technology. Service-based infrastructure must offer a complete, top-to-bottom package to cater for every aspect of the insurance business.
It is difficult to derive analytics from ageing systems because of their cumbersome, diffused and non-heterogeneous nature.
A business process management system should provide a high-level dashboard that offers senior claims managers an overall snapshot of the departments, as well as specific, detailed reports on each individual claim.
Managed business processes and service-based infrastructure help insurers become more agile and responsive.
Simon Penny is head of insurance at Software AG
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