April 9, 2018 by Jason Contant
Applied Systems’ new “translation services” will provide broker data distribution as effectively as direct distribution and enable the broker channel to better compete, the software provider said Friday.
Jeff Purdy, senior vice president of international operations with Applied, talked to Canadian Underwriter Friday about Applied’s new “translation services.” The software provides a way to move data between insurers and broker management systems across the insurance life-cycle – including quoting, binding, servicing and, ultimately, renewal.
Using the example of a digital broker’s sold policy on a mobile device, Purdy said in an interview that “if that transaction is finished in real-time, then the consumer can literally have policy documentation on their mobile device in real-time. That is a really compelling value proposition that aligns with the direct channel.”
For a digital broker, Purdy said, that means presenting information to an insured in the form they want – whether it’s on a mobile device, an SMS text or self-service portal, for example. “A digital broker is set,” Purdy said. “Their value proposition is no different than a direct seller of insurance, with the benefit of being a broker and providing advice and providing choice.”
With broker distribution moving the data back and forth as effectively as direct distribution, Purdy said, “the quote can be completed, the price can be formalized – ultimately documentation will be presented to the consumer, and that’s a value that broker distribution needs to provide to be able to compete against alternative distribution forms.”
Purdy explained that the software, which provides documentation in English and French, sits in between the broker management system (BMS) and the insurer’s system. Using the example Guidewire, which holds data and business rules for policy processing, the software sits outside of Guidewire and receives data on a download. It then takes that data, which is in a specific organized format, and “translates” it into a format the receiver needs, whether it is CSIO XML or CSIO AL3, for example.
“Our service translates that data and then the same on real-time,” Purdy said. In the other direction, the data leaves the BMS, the translation services catches it and reformats it into the format that the Guidewire platform needs to consume it. “You can replace Guidewire with Duck Creek [or] with another policy processing system,” he added.
Applied is a North American partner of Guidewire and supports the Canadian Guidewire Users Group, which included, as of August 2017, representatives from Aviva Canada, Economical Insurance, Red River Mutual and Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Company.
Carol Jardine, Wawanesa’s new president of Canadian P&C operations, told Canadian Underwriter Friday that BMS integration with Wawanesa’s systems is a top priority for the insurer. She said that Wawanesa plans to have a solution for new business in Alberta in place by November of this year.