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7 Key benefits of BPM to Insurance companies

To face competition, Insurance companies continue to face intense pressure to improve performance, increase profitability, achieve superior customer satisfaction, and increase shareholder value. Of late, business process management (BPM) has emerged as a proven management approach that helps insurers meet these business objectives and gain competitive edge. Following are some of the key benefits that can be experienced by Insurance companies.

1. Enable continuous process improvement

Providing the right process-management environment in the organization, enabling easy management (Develop, maintain and monitor) of the business processes, is the key to achieve constant process improvement. BPM allows processes and rules to be optimized, monitored and re-visited easily. BPM allows to assess process speeds, process time-lags, process-bottle necks, process errors etc., which are the important diagnostics for analyzing processes leading to process improvement. It allows the process owners or power users to re-visit the processes on the fly, without the need for depending on IT department for changes. This is possible because the processes are built based on visual process diagrams rather than hard code, which are easy to manage by any Non-IT employee.

2. Increase productivity through better transparency and collaboration

Productivity means Profitability. It is a known fact that the organizations build departments which unfortunately form into functional silos gradually, though the actual work / processes cut across all or most of the departments for completion of a task. BPM starts with the documentation and formalization of business tasks and rules, thus reducing dependence on a few key employees. Key business rules or decisions can be incorporated into the processes, thus enforcing policies and procedures transparently. BPM enables seamless integration of workflow tasks with back-end systems, thus removing the need for mundane tasks such as manual reconciliation, visual data verification, and physical data entry. It also enables several people involved in each process to connect well for the execution of tasks.

3. Align the departments with business strategy

BPM helps establish a link between departmental or individual SLAs with the organizational goals. BPM allows insurance companies to automate flow of notifications, approvals, escalations and alerts with both agents and employees, thus allowing better and more up-to-date access to information. BPM helps assess the variances in SLAs periodically and fix them to improve performance speeds, lag time and errors.

4. Deliver superior underwriting results

BPM makes it possible for insurance companies to standardize on a common underwriting process. Right from the application stage to approval, the process can be made more visible for all stake holders of the process, allowing for better control and monitoring. Which means any stakeholder of a process can see which stage the task is, in execution process. Apart from advantage of keeping a tab on any task, it reduces the process time drastically.

5. Improve turn-around time for settling claims

This is yet another crucial process, which often can lead to customer dissatisfaction easily because of several important steps to be followed. Validation of the claim and risk-assessment being two important aspects of the claims settlement, it often can delay the process. BPM helps Insurance companies to monitor each claim by enabling to assess the stage of any task, in the execution process. Also enables easy collaboration for the people involved to exchange comments or raise queries, so that it enables easy back and forth movement of the task in a process.

6. Agent management

Without any doubt, agents play very important role in the Insurance business. And hence managing the agents become important. Approval of appointment of a new agent, monitoring their performance, approval and disbursal of their commissions are inherent to this process. BPM helps to set SLAs and also assess their performance. Timely triggers/escalations can also be incorporated to see how the variances in performance can be addressed online.

7. Regulatory compliances

With increasing stringent compliances required right from products approval, grievance management, periodic disclosures etc., BPM allows Insurance companies to set the people, roles, targets, escalation points for each of the tasks in any process or sub process. It can even allow integration with IRDA’S systems to comply and also keep track.

- Written by Chandrasekhar PS, a Certified Process Professional from BP Group

Synergy has been helping many clients implement BPM from last six years, whether it be a core process or support processes. Synergy carries over 200,000 manhours of BPM implementation. Synergy has been supporting clients in the entire BPM life cycle right from identifying right BPM software or tools, developing process models, Analysis of As-Is processes, Designing the new processes, Business Process Monitoring and implementing new BPM applications. In effect, Synergy has witnessed clients benefiting from drastic process improvements.

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