Between a rock and a hard place: Why insurers tend to stay with their legacy document management solution

Insurance is a document-driven enterprise. Few industries rival it in the amount of paper handled, and how much that paper impacts personnel productivity, process efficiency, regulatory compliance and customer service. It shouldn’t surprise anyone, therefore, that insurance carriers were among the early adopters of enterprise content management (ECM) technologies. According to Gartner Inc., a leading information technology research and advisory firm, more than 50 percent of Tier 1 and 2 insurers in the P&C and Life sectors have invested in ECM software to manage and archive their documents.

What does seem surprising – given the importance of documents to core processes such as policy administration, claims administration and underwriting – is how many carriers are reluctant to upgrade or replace legacy ECM systems they purchased nearly (or more than) a decade ago. ECM software platforms have advanced significantly in terms of functionality, ease of use and total cost to own.

This article studies why insurers are reluctant to invest in new ECM software and provides advice on how carriers can fully evaluate the costs of sticking with their current system versus investing in new technology.