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Keys to BPM Success

See Related Feature: The Architecture of Adaptation: Enabling Flexibility With Business Architecture and BPM

BPM offers hope to insurers attempting to meet the need for speed and agility in today's insurance market. But success requires breaking with traditional ways of looking at systems and processes and adopting new approaches, according to Erik Mann, SVP, insurance group, MindTree Consulting.

Insurers' top priority must be to eliminate silos, Mann asserts. "Carriers have a long history of maintaining different operational groups. That is a highly inwardly focused model," he says. "For BPM efforts to be truly transformational, they have to be cross-functional in both the lifecycle dimension and organizational dimension."

A key mind-set change is to think outside in, Mann recommends. "This is one of the hardest things to do," he concedes. "Carriers must create 'voice of the customer' teams that can represent the toughest external critics and challenge conventional thinking."

Finally, carriers driving BPM efforts must be willing to revise in iterations. "Do your best to anticipate the need and take a stab at transformation," Mann says. "Be prepared to quickly react to feedback and results and have a game plan for Version 2."

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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