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Automated systems for new business and underwriting deliver important benefits to insurers in terms of speed, accuracy, cost reduction and improved service. A growing number of insurers are seeing value in moving their automated services to a software as a service (SaaS) model.
Through an SaaS licensing and delivery option, the software capabilities are made available as a service—using a Web browser to access the software in the cloud—with costs assessed on a usage basis. Companies do not have to acquire hardware, nor deal with costly software upgrades and maintenance costs. They can all subscribe to a shared infrastructure as well as shared help desk services.
Life insurance and annuity carriers today face intensified pressures to reduce costs and improve efficiencies across the end-to-end policy life cycle in a way that can create market advantage. Driving better performance in the area of new business and underwriting is especially important.
The automated capabilities of a new business and underwriting system are therefore increasingly attractive. Such systems can enable insurers to more rapidly process new applications and assess risk, while reducing the cost of issuing policies.
Accenture believes that one of the most important trends in the area of new business and underwriting systems is the growing use of an SaaS delivery model. Buying software with an SaaS licensing option is attractive to insurers that do not need a customized solution; companies can leverage pre-defined templates and pre-existing configurations based on best practices and the experience of the SaaS provider.
An SaaS approach can also shorten implementation times and give firms ready access to IT maintenance and monitoring capabilities, eliminating the need to hire specialized skills.
On-premise new business and underwriting systems will still be an important option for many insurers. However, for smaller or mid-tier carriers, SaaS offerings can provide robust capabilities in automated underwriting without the upfront cost of systems and hardware. Larger carriers can also implement hybrid models with on-premise solutions combined with SaaS solutions for specific functionality.
August 24, 2012
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