What does workload automation mean for the insurance services industry?
Today, the insurance sector is increasingly using the power of technology to provide differentiated services, find new ways to partner with other businesses, tap into new markets, and transform the way they interact with customers.
Alongside the explosion of technology, new capabilities for workload automation are helping insurance institutions digitally transform, especially in driving operational efficiencies and meeting the ever-changing needs of customers, both business and consumer.
Implementing workload automation within a complex IT system boosts the producitivity of both the organization and its people. With various types of automation solutions available to insurance enterprises, we can explore the use cases and explain how insurance providers can benefit from workload automation solutions such as OpCon.
In the insurance services industry, automation is mostly focused on mobilizing software to automate and structure tasks that are usually performed by people.
Every day around the world, insurance institutions of all sizes are still using manual processing methods to complete ever-growing lists of business-critical tasks, resulting in massive workforce inefficiencies. The presence of antiquated job scheduler platforms is widespread, and the required manual interventions and fixes consume valuable workhours. Since technology can now complete these tasks more quickly and securely than teams of individuals, workload automation is often a cost-effective way of optimizing insurance business processes.
One of the major challenges within the insurance industry is the inability to integrate various industry-specific software across different business units within the overall IT umbrella. OpCon workload automation remedies this by connecting apps across multiple IT platforms to create cross-system efficiencies from start to finish.
With less need for human capital to perform those tedious and repetitive tasks, employees are available to focus on more strategic projects that help serve customers and scale the business. And with security and compliance being top of mind for insurance institutions, workload automation minimizes many of the manual processes typically required to stay compliant. By reducing errors and creating clear audit logs, significant stressful parts of maintaining compliance are minimized and taken care of automatically.
How does workload automation compare to robotic process automation?
Workload automation tools and job scheduling solutions can help solve sophisticated problems by making intelligent decisions within a set of controls. Workload automation excels at automating the backend IT processes that integrate third party apps and makes everything in the IT environment work more efficiently. Given the increase in online and mobile policy options, it’s important to have an insurance automation system that self-improves as it receives more and more data.
For the insurance sector, Robotic Process Automation (RPA) refers to software that is programmed to assist in processing the repetitive tasks employees do – much like a virtual assistant. RPA-friendly tasks include sending emails, opening applications, and copying and pasting information from one database system to another. However, RPA does not interact with each of the complex IT systems needed to run a successful insurance company.
Workload automation tools and job scheduling solutions can help solve sophisticated problems by making intelligent decisions within a set of controls. Given the increase in online banking and cashless payment options, it’s important to have a financial automation system that self-improves as it receives more and more data.
For the financial sector, Robotic Process Automation (RPA) refers to software that is programmed to assist in processing the repetitive tasks employees do – much like a banking virtual assistant.
Where a workload automation platform shines is by providing a central point of control for all the automated processes in a complex IT environment. OpCon integrates ERP systems like SAP or Infor with ITSM providers like ServiceNow, along with Windows and Linux environments, and ensures that everything flows smoothly and efficiently. Notifications, alerts, and resolution workflows are all available from a central console, making it much easier to manage the IT systems for large enterprises.
In short, workload automation tools help business solves complex problems by performing repetitive tasks with minimal input, while RPA automates very simple, manual tasks.
Why automate insurance business processes?
Considering the global shift towards app-driven interactions, AI’s role in detecting and mitigating fraud, and the rise of online services, automation has never been more important for insurance organizations.
Workload automation platforms like SMA Technologies’ OpCon eliminate human errors with centralized script management and break down application silos by integrating cross-platform workflows within a single point of control. Having a single platform that grants visibility and control over all applications is by far the most efficient use of resources for IT teams that are always being asked to conserve budget.
Automation has also proven a real game-changer for back office procedures. Often insurance institutions with thousands of people processing time-consuming customer requests risk inconsistent outcomes at best, and a high error rate at worst. Automated solutions can drastically cut the time needed for back-office processing, freeing employees up to focus on higher level work.
Common applications of workload automation in insurance
Insurance institutions around the world are using SMA Technologies’ OpCon workload automation to improve business critical processes and procedures such as:
- - Business continuity and disaster recovery
- - Customer due diligence (CDD)
- - File transfers
- - Risk, compliance, and audit analysis
- - Insurance planning, and data reporting
- - Customer account reconciliation
- - Data validation
- - Operational insurance and accounting
A primary use of the automation platform is improving risk management, and reducing expenses. When a company has several operating systems with different scripts and workflows running on multiple servers, it becomes unmanageable over time, especially when attempting to process one-off exceptions, and troubleshoot unexpected issues. By having all IT processes visible from one control panel, OpCon offers clear visibility across multiple operating systems, different programming languages, and even departments.
Efficiencies in disaster recovery environments is also key to providing proper support to customers. Prior to deploying SMA Technologies’ OpCon in its disaster recovery environment, one client’s failover process took about two and a half hours and required more than 150 manual steps. OpCon now automates 95% of this process.
A core use of the automation platform is improving risk management, and reducing expenses. When a bank has several operating systems with different scripts and workflows running on multiple servers, it becomes unmanageable over time, especially when attempting to process exceptions, and troubleshoot unexpected issues. With a single pane view, OpCon offers clear visibility across multiple operating systems, different programming languages, and even departments.
Efficiencies in financial institution disaster recovery environments is also key to providing proper support to customers. Prior to deploying SMA Technologies’ OpCon in its disaster recovery environment, VyStar Credit Union’s failover process took about two and a half hours and required more than 150 manual steps. OpCon now automates 95% of this process.
How SMA Technologies can help
SMA Technologies’ OpCon workload automation platform helps insurance enterprises meet their strategic business goals, without the need for a costly upskilling drive internally. Thanks to cross-functional, bi-modal orchestration and hybrid cloud infrastructure, OpCon can drive operational agility, as well as automation at scale.
For busy teams, a clear consolidation of workflow operating systems is essential for the smooth-running of their business. With a single automation platform, OpCon workload automation makes it possible to improve employee productivity and speed, while reducing risks, operational costs, and human errors.
Jack Henry & Associates (JHA) recognized that reliance on inefficient manual processes was impacting multiple areas of their business and creating obstacles on their technology roadmap. So, JHA integrated OpCon with all their third-party data-flow processes (data warehouse, BI, ACH, check clearing, federal reserve, etc.) and can now run a $14.4M to $3.5B clients on the same infrastructure due to the scalability of workload automation.
Ultimately, managing workflow, enhancing security and governance, and fully automating disaster recovery often has the greatest impact on an insurance institutions’ ability to stay compliant, reduce costs, and boost efficiencies. With the insurance industry seeing major shifts in how consumers interact with the business, workload automation is a vital tool for insurance institutions of all sizes.
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