Maintaining legacy systems is an easy trap to fall into. Maybe your existing technology couldn’t cope with a regulatory change, a new product launch or an additional line of business; Rather than spending time and money on costly reengineering, the quick fix was to add another administration system. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
In the face of evolving products, business models and regulations, it’s vital that your back-office systems keep pace. Here are the three main reasons why a change could do you good.
First, there are the costs. Each administration system may command its own license fee, require a different operating system and, as time goes by, become more expensive to maintain, upgrade and adapt to new business or compliance requirements. Second, multiple systems increase risk and drain productivity because processes and data are replicated. Third, as staff retire or move on, the knowledge base that supported your technology may leave with them, making systems even harder to manage, reconfigure and maintain.
Consolidating two or more systems onto a single policy administration platform can both reduce IT burden and streamline your processes, thus increasing efficiency and lowering costs.
The key is to identify an ideal target for migration: a comprehensive, flexible platform that will support all of your lines of business. You want one with open architecture for simple conversion and integration of data, as well as one that’s easy to configure to new products and regulations.
A growing number of technology providers will also host a platform of this kind on your behalf, further reducing infrastructure costs and IT headaches.
So, what’s standing in your way? Respondents to FIS’ recent global survey cited the sheer complexity of legacy systems - 75 percent of insurers said that stops them from replacing legacy systems.
That’s understandable, but an experienced technology provider, repeatable processes for consolidation and strong communication between all concerned will offset any project risks. And don’t consolidate all at once. Choosing a suitable candidate – one system or line of business – for the first migration, will help you recognize results faster and reinforce your efforts.
None of us really know what tomorrow holds, but the single, comprehensive policy administration system is an effective way to cover all eventualities for your business. With future-proofed confidence in your platform, you’ll be in a stronger position to seize new opportunities and leave legacy behind for good.
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