Core Values of ECM Meet Top Insurance Software Issues

Last week Insurance Networking News published a news story regarding the release of new research from the firm, Strategy Meets Action (SMA). The research comes from over 100 hours of interviews with insurance executives and focuses on the top 10 issues facing insurers in 2010.

I was excited to see the results from SMA because several of the top 10 fit right into the core values ECM brings to insurance organizations – several of which we have already discussed through this blog. Three of the issues that hit closest to home are:

#6 – Apply smarts to underwriting
#8 – Holistically link customer communication
#9 – Benefit from business optimization

Apply Smarts to Underwriting
One of the guiding fundamentals of ECM for insurance companies is the ability to enforce your underwriting guidelines and business rules throughout your process. Now, I’m not saying that an ECM system is going to replace your policy admin. system or your rating engine. On the contrary, ECM is a complementary technology that allows you to book new business faster and more accurately than your competition – without sacrificing risk tolerance.

Holistically Link Customer Communication
From the outside the differences between Customer Correspondence Management (CCM) and ECM can be hard to see; however, ECM applications bring value on two fronts. Many ECM applications provide the ability to generate and store customer communication, but more importantly they provide the ability to link communications with all other content related to a policyholder (correspondence, applications, declaration pages, notices of loss, estimates, interviews, etc.). This really gives policyholder services the ability to have a true holistic view of a customer.

Benefit From Business Optimization
Ever insurer wants to do more with less and ECM is one of the technologies that allows them to do that. I continually hear from prospects, “we need to figure out how to reduce our cycle times and take advantage of the economic recovery.” The key to doing this is to optimize your business processes. People think of ECM as just document management or imaging – but I’m here to tell you it does much more. ECM can be used to not just store content related to the transaction, but to process the transaction and even to manage the process itself.

I hope you can see that ECM can be one technology that can make an impact across multiple areas. Thanks to Deb Smallwood and her team of researchers – I look forward to your next report…

Eric Willis

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