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Three Ways to Drive Process Automation for Insurance with a Business Rules Engine

April 26, 2021

Digital transformation at well-established insurance providers has been in process for more than a decade, with the goal of streamlining processes to unlock growth, increase profitability, and protect their brand. Meanwhile, newer, more nimble insurance start-ups are trying to leverage the latest technologies in their quest to stay one step ahead.

The bottom line is that business process automation for insurance is imperative, speeding the ability to deliver more customized products and tailored experiences and improve customer service while reducing risk and managing loss. Cloud-native technologies are making these digital experiences more robust and nimble, but if the business logic based on clear business rules can’t keep up with the rapid market changes, it’s all for naught.

The key: A rules-based business process automation platform, which can be easily updated as the market evolves, accelerating the ability to capture present and future opportunities. The industry’s combination of legacy, hybrid, and cloud-native development makes it imperative that the workflow and rules-based platform can be implemented across all three environments or within each environment separately – to ensure delivery of comprehensive process automation for insurance.

A business process automation and management platform can be used to streamline or build a variety of business functions and applications, including:

  • Quoting – Leverage rules and streamline workflow to create an automated quoting app
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM) – Use rules to personalize engagements with your customers
  • Correspondence – Automate the process of exchanging messaging with clients
  • Claims – Streamline the claims process with workflows and rules
  • Reinsurance – Manage reinsurance contracts

How to Implement a Rules-based Process Automation Platform for Insurance

1) Build It All in One Place

The rapidly changing global economy has significantly increased opportunities beyond traditional lines of insurance business. An example: car sharing has created demand for by-the-hour auto insurance v. yearly insurance policies. Existing, off-the-shelf technologies built for traditional insurance companies cannot provide that type of flexibility, so companies are having to build their own solutions.

With a no-code, rules-driven business process automation for insurance, they can develop the entire end-to-end process – from the backend logic and rules engine to the customized insurance quotes delivered via an interactive website, approval messages, policy deliveries, and payment processing – with only minimal demands on the IT team. The platform can also easily integrate into existing off-the-shelf software where necessary. Ultimately, managing both operations and logic from a single platform accelerates time to market, makes it easier to make changes, and reduces development costs.

2) Use It for Orchestration & Integration

While insurance companies have enthusiastically embraced the cloud and implemented a variety of SaaS applications, many processes, applications, and data are still being run from within a mainframe infrastructure or other legacy systems. The ongoing quest to move data among the systems has led to an increasing volume of middleware and workarounds, introducing errors, increasing technical bottlenecks, and sometimes even requiring manual data entry – significantly reducing productivity and customer service.

Beyond the technical challenges, personnel challenges are increasingly becoming an issue. The mainframe system programmers – kings and queens of COBOL – as well as mainframe data managers are starting to age out of the workforce and finding qualified individuals has been difficult for many organizations.

Rip and replace generally hasn’t worked when it comes to replacing legacy infrastructure, and insurance companies need new solutions. In this case, the insurance process automation platform can be used as an orchestration and integration layer, where it ties existing systems together, managing data flow across applications and databases. Using a rules engine platform to separate business rules and logic from apps and data increases robustness and resilience.

3) Leverage Flexibility to Keep Up with Global Demands

Large multinational insurance companies face even more complexity — not just because their technology infrastructure spans the globe but also because they face a variety of regulatory requirements based on their countries of operations. They generally have an extensive portfolio containing thousands of business rules – global, country, and region – which may be duplicated across a variety of systems. Therefore, any change to one rule may have repercussions beyond the existing system within which the change occurs.

The easiest way to simplify management of the various rules is to implement a standalone rules engine that integrates across the entire infrastructure. Instead of requiring the development team to rewrite code every time something changes, the platform can be the single source of truth. It can manage rules in a single place while ensuring that data remains in the regional systems of record. This reduces the need for duplicate work, ensures consistency, and maintains a clear activity log to ensure all changes can be tracked.

Making It Easy

No matter the existing insurance infrastructure, it needs to serve insurance customers’ ever-increasing demands for personalized, frictionless service. Simplicity is key, both on the back end and the customer-facing applications. Time to market is critical to address the rapidly evolving insurance market and to gain and maintain a competitive advantage. With a flexible business process automation and management platform, insurance companies can quickly and easily build the systems that meet customer demands while maximizing the value of existing infrastructure, increasing ROI and reducing TCO.

For more in-depth analysis and insights, please download our latest whitepaper to learn how you can transform your business using a business rules engine.

Becky Simanowski
Becky Simanowski is the Digital Marketing Director at Decisions and manages all digital marketing programs including SEO, SEM, Email, Social Media, and Conversion Rate Optimization.

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