Modern policy administration systems (PAS) provide insurers with multiple benefits. They are also an expensive investment in time, resources and money.
So, what are your options to address additional functionality after making such as substantial investment?
In the blog article “3 Long-Term Cost Benefits of Microservices,” I outlined how insurance core systems such as claims, underwriting, policy, billing, rating, and agency management systems are all very complex applications. However, complexity does not guarantee the required functionality.
When a modern PAS is purchased as part of a core systems suite, many insurers find themselves in the position of “settling” for less than desired functionality in return for a single vendor solution. Customizations can be cost prohibitive resulting in insurers finding themselves in an uncomfortable position.
From a functional standpoint, microservices can extend the level of functionality in any area. By deploying a combination of microservices, you can improve areas of efficiencies without over-complicating things.
Below are three examples of how microservices can provide the right level of functionality for the right level of complexity.
Many times, insurers cannot use the rating engine that is part of a modern PAS due to the expense and resources required to get a new product up and running quickly. Insurers also have invested in multiple rating engines over the years that cannot be easily replaced by the new PAS rating engine.
Microservices can be used to create a customized central rating service that is accessible simultaneously by multiple disparate systems used by insurers and agents.
When expanding into new markets, a secondary more modern rating service can be created using microservices to launch new products faster across all lines of business to meet business demands. For example, insurers can test rate plans progressively for new products as they are developed.
The complexity and breath of a new PAS can be overkill for certain users. For example, agents and brokers that have access to an insurer’s PAS may only need access to a small percentage of the functionality offered.
Microservices can be used to simplify the user experience by breaking down a large complex application into smaller applications that are easier for agents and brokers to use. All aspects of the user experience can be changed including workflows at the field and page level and hyperlinks within pages.
Microservices can be used to improve the user experience by providing a single view into multiple disparate back end databases and providing uninterrupted integration to 3rd party services. This brings the customer an optimal user experience. In addition, when there is a need to switch out an internal database or an external data provider vendor, there is no disruption to that user experience.
Although document generation is included as part of an enterprise PAS, they can be difficult to learn and use, with users typically only using 10% of the available functionality. Insurers simply need to create documents such as declaration pages, forms, and invoices for different reasons quickly.
Microservices provide for a lightweight document generation service that addresses the basic core needs cost efficiently for a newly targeted line of business. In addition to the basic necessary functionality, a lightweight document generation service can include functionality such as document fields automatically populated with policy and quote data and custom workflows.
Before you invest time and money in a new PAS, consider what microservices can do for you. Microservices offer additional functionality and deliver what you want without having to settle for less. Installing a new, modern PAS out-of-box will offer the latest functionality, but are you willing to make do with less than what you expect/need?
This is where a set of user experience microservices that allow configurable screens and process flows, coupled with an integration services framework layered with business rules, can deliver real value.
Interested in learning more about OWIT Global's microservices? Click the link below.