August 2006

Cover Story

Smart Companies
Insurers are using improved technology and the lessons of past failures to drive business intelligence throughout the enterprise.

Case Study
Chasing Time
Vertabase's online productivity solution revolutionizes Mercer Insurance Group's project and time management processes.

Follow the Rules
Blue Shield of California centralizes human resources systems and automates workflows with Enterprise Human Capital Management solution.

One on One
Best of Both Worlds
Jim Hanson, EVP of Information Services, Mutual of Omaha Jim Hanson and Mutual of Omaha have a long history together. Hanson joined the mutual company right out of college and has served in his current role as the carrier's EVP for information services for 10 years. During his tenure, Hanson has been able to update the organization's legacy systems with new technologies while making the resulting IT environment appear seamless to the company's internal and external customers. In fact, Hanson and his IT team have provided so much value that organizations outside of insurance are asking Mutual of Omaha to provide IT services for them as well.


Digging for Dollars
Insurers are mining data and implementing sales force automation tools to manage distribution channels more effectively.

Virtual Roundtable
Managing Mobility
Insurers are deploying mobile/wireless devices and applications to improve productivity in areas such as sales/agent support and claims. But security issues create risks.

Names in the News
Gosnell Takes CUNA Baton
Tom Gosnell has been passed the technology leadership baton at Madison, Wis.-based CUNA Mutual Group ($2.64 billion in 2005 revenue), leaving former CIO Rick Roy to concentrate on his new role as SVP of customer operations.

Esposito: Business First
The cost-consciousness prevalent in the lean years following the dot-com bust has tended to blunt the innovative spirit of technology leadership at insurance companies, in the view of Mark Esposito, the recently appointed CIO for The Hartford Financial Services subsidiary Hartford Life's individual life division.

Executive News

From The Editor
Here We Go Again
No one can say they weren't warned. Whatever ends up actually transpiring in terms of named hurricanes and other bad weather this summer, the 2006 hurricane season already has to be in the running as the most-analyzed season on record.

Not Risking It
To limit its risk exposure, Allstate cuts earthquake coverage, citing limitations of catastrophe modeling technology.

Easy Money
The Hartford and JPMorgan Chase create debit cards with cash allowances to meet emergency needs of policyholders.

Whitehill Acquires InSystems
Vendor seeks to increase footprint in insurance vertical with more-comprehensive document automation solutions.

Allianz Life Pursues STP
Insurer streamlines new business processing with NaviSys Front Office.

Contract News

Alliances & Partnerships

Back To Business
Scanning Time
Peak Performance has launched PolicyPointe, a Web-based application for P&C insurance companies that rates and underwrites risk in real time through embedded business rules, the company says.

Virtual Policy Processing
Peak Performance has launched PolicyPointe, a Web-based application for P&C insurance companies that rates and underwrites risk in real time through embedded business rules, the company says.

Recognizing Excellence
Three years ago, New Haven-based Connecticut Interlocal Risk Management Agency decided to automate its claims processing and integrate its core business systems.

Navigating Sales With SunGard
Then Cleveland-based First Catholic Slovak Ladies Association, a fraternal insurance society, decided to build an independent agency force, one of its first challenges was to implement a sales illustration system to meet state requirements, according to Pat Braun, national sales manager at FCSLA.

Consolidating Risk
To help insurers manage their risk exposure across the enterprise, Toronto-based Algorithmics has enhanced its Algo Risk solution to calculate risk for insurance liabilities and investment assets consistently within a single framework.

Connected Enterprise
Does anyone know what time it is?
Recently, I heard a Piper Jaffray analyst report that sales of moderately priced watches are declining - mainly because kids (anyone under 21?) don't think they need them.

In With The New
New offerings based on advanced technologies, as well as intensifying competitive pressures, make a strong argument for P&C legacy systems replacement.

Slaying The Hydra One Head At A Time
SOA and Web services are enabling the modularization of policy management systems, which, in turn, will help insurers meet the increasingly demanding expectations of consumers.

Staying In The Game
For insurers that rely on independent agents, moving to Web-based policy administration systems to enable producers to submit business electronically has become a competitive necessity.