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Insurity Speeds Argonaut to Market

Facing the need to ramp up quickly into new lines of business, Argonaut Insurance Co. chose to implement Insurity's Web-based property/casualty policy processing services to support the carrier's nationwide rating and policy issuance for general liability and commercial auto.

Facing the need to ramp up into new lines of business quickly, Argonaut Insurance Co. chose to implement Hartford-based Insurity, Inc.'s Web-based property/casualty policy processing services to support the carrier's nationwide rating and policy issuance for general liability and commercial auto.

Menlo Park, Calif.-based Argonaut had planned to expand its existing general liability and auto operations, but found itself under pressure to do so quickly upon the acquisition of a bundled segment of The Kemper Insurance Companies' large risk business, according to Mary Scavarda, chief information officer, Argonaut. "We were writing very minimal GL and auto and the Kemper business really escalated that need because now we actually had customers with those policies that we needed to be able to service," she recounts. Argonaut's existing GL and auto systems were deemed insufficient for the business the carrier both planned and needed to write, "so we needed a pretty quick out-of-the-box solution to get us a rating and policy management and issuance solution," Scavarda adds.

Under the terms of the five-year contract, Insurity managed development of a software solution through its proprietary Customer Requirements Book (CRB) process, which defines the clients business and technical requirements for the system being implemented, according to Insurity.

"We had a good cross section of our people participate in that process, including the vice president of underwriting, a systems analyst, underwriters and underwriters assistants," Scavarda recalls. Following an August 2003 start date, Argonaut's people signed off and Insurity made the desired modifications, she recounts. "We're in the test phase now," in anticipation of an October 1 production date, Scavarda adds.

In addition to the speed of ramp-up, Argonaut chose the Insurity solution in part based on previous experience with the vendor's Producer Intellisys product, which Argonaut agents used to rate program business over the Web, according to Scavarda. "But the number-one reason was that the Insurity solution is built to handle the size of policies that we write," she remarks. "A lot of other products are meant for smaller-premium kinds of policies and were not as focused on a national platform, and Insurity's is. There was a long checklist, but those were the two aspects where Insurity was a head above its competitors."

Anthony O'Donnell has covered technology in the insurance industry since 2000, when he joined the editorial staff of Insurance & Technology. As an editor and reporter for I&T and the InformationWeek Financial Services of TechWeb he has written on all areas of information ... View Full Bio

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