Is now the time for your insurance company to re-platform?
If ever there was a time for insurance companies to consider re-platforming, it’s today.
By Adam Hargreaves : 14th of April 2023
Although, historically, insurers didn’t pay as much mind to the business threat outdated insurance platforms posed, times are certainly changing. One report from the Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation found that insurers identified outdated technology infrastructure as the top threat to business in the next few years. Digital innovation might be top of mind for the industry, but we know that overhauling your insurance platform isn’t an inherent fix-all for your business.
It raises a question: When is re-platforming more trouble than it’s worth? And when is it a no-brainer?
In my experience advising insurers on how to integrate technology for business success, this is a question I contemplate often.
In which instances is it worth shaking your insurance tech up? When isn’t it?
On one hand, you could invest further in updates intended to bring your core platforms up to speed. On the other, you could invest in re-platforming. It’s easy to appreciate the conundrum some insurers experience, contemplating this question.
The don’t-fix-what’s-not-broken adage is pertinent at a mention, but it’s a good one to scrutinise too. How do you know if your existing system isn’t broken? What I often observe is that some insurers’ platforms aren’t broken, in a sense. In a sense, they perform all the functions an insurer has come to expect them to perform. You could say the same for an old car that still takes you from A to B. Or a mobile phone from a decade ago.
But the next question I would ask is, “Is your platform entrapping you in procedures and processes that aren’t efficient in the modern market anymore?”
Does my insurance platform bring out the best in my business?
There are some simple questions you can ask to help identify if your platform is inherently beneficial to your business’s efficiency and productivity:
If you answered no to some or all of these, you could have grounds for considering if your platform might be due for improvements.
What does re-platforming in insurance involve?
Re-platforming isn’t about replacing one entire system with another. It’s about drilling into an existing legacy platform and architecting new open configurations that revive your staff members’ and customers’ engagement with your platform (front or back).
To evaluate the merits of re-platforming, it’s helpful to test the mettle of your existing platform wholesale. That’s not to say that you necessarily need a wholesale overhaul. But when you have the mindset that everything is potentially changeable, you can better identify every critical change.
There’s no getting around the reality that overhauling your insurance technology platform is a formidable job. It makes sense, considering the pay off. However, it doesn’t have to be daunting.
The key is to map out a pathway to transformation that you can achieve increment by increment. We advise companies to build in changes, and then learn from these, and then build in more. Often, it’s constructive to prioritise the implementation of a particular function that’s high up in the hierarchy of importance (maybe it’s a system of automations). Then you can filter in additional changes in the hierarchy.
What are the benefits of re-platforming for insurers?
Before you consider testing the waters of re-platforming, it’s helpful to weigh up the main benefits.
As we’ve previously highlighted, there are a number of potential benefits to partnering with an insurance technology provider who can support you all the way. With the right partnership, you can re-platform to:
Ultimately, insurers need to be digitally advanced before they can remain digitally advanced. Each evolution of platform technology an insurance company falls behind on means there’s a greater leap to take to catch up. Operating with an outdated platform creates significant challenges but modernising through re-platforming is certainly achievable with the right expertise and support.