As Kofi Annan, the former United Nations Secretary General stated, “It has been said that arguing against globalization is like arguing against the laws of gravity.” The program business marketplace is experiencing a period of growth, even outpacing the normal direct commercial market, according to the 2019 biannual Target Markets Program Administrators Association (TMPAA) State of Program Business study. Meanwhile, MGAs, carriers and program administrators are able to use technology to streamline efficiencies, capture new products and bring them to market faster.
When you combine growth in a business sector with the technology needed to support it, you have a perfect opportunity to grow business globally.
Other industries have paved the way by successfully spreading beyond the borders. So, why not insurance? Whether you want to develop and diversify your book of business or write risks similar to those you already specialize in, you need to leverage technology to be successful in the global market.
The Insurance Management System (IMS) is designed to support global business, with web services and a customizable platform made to accommodate regional data, governance and processes.
Many MGAs, carriers and program administrators are already growing their footprint internationally. IMS customer, DUAL Commercial, established a division to write business in Australia and New Zealand, with more international expansion on deck. DUAL relies on the inherent flexibility of IMS to manage this business. Powerful web services and platform integration points allow the base IMS product to be configured to address the unique needs of DUAL’s international business. For example, IMS supports multi-currency, Goods and Services tax (GST) implementation as well as the specific document requirements of each country.
Another requirement of the international offices of DUAL was to have a truly integrated claims module in the program administration system. IMS provides such a module, as well as the ability to easily import historical claims data for accurate reporting and future underwriting. DUAL uses IMS to pay claims in different currencies, with an API that accesses exchange rate services before generating claims payments.
Steve Cota, CIO of DUAL Commercial stated, “If IMS weren’t so flexible as a system we couldn’t leverage the technology to do the types of things that we’ve done. We’ve been able to extend IMS with our custom front-end portal applications to assist in managing our international business needs.”
Another IMS customer operating internationally is RSG Underwriting Managers (a division of Ryan Specialty Group), a specialty delegated authority underwriting group of about 20 underwriting management teams. All teams use IMS to manage their international business in locations such as London, Sweden, Denmark and Spain. To grow and diversify their portfolio, they looked abroad, knowing that IMS could accommodate any customizations they might require. For example, RSG Underwriting Managers has foreign currency booking with IMS. They also produce invoices for non-native English-speaking business units, as well as handling the international date format of yyyy-mm-dd.
David Mathes, Vice President, Underwriting Systems and Training of RSG Underwriting Managers predicts the future of international business in two words, “buckle up.” He elaborated that the MGA space is fluid and one needs to be able to adapt at a moment’s notice. David commented that this is where MGA Systems is invaluable. “IMS is a workhorse,” added David. “Speed to market is important. IMS helps us get there.”
When you are considering expansion to other countries and want to partner with a vendor that can help meet your goals, please give us a call at (877) 790‑1114 or contact us here to discover how IMS and MGA Systems can provide you with the custom solution you need.