Needham, Mass. - The time is right for U.S. property and casualty claims insurers to aggressively exploit the business benefits of an enterprise mobility strategy, according to new research from research and advisory services firm TowerGroup.   TowerGroup's report, "Mobile Solutions for US Property & Casualty Claims: Life in the Fast Lane," maintains that while using mobile solutions for settling claims is not new to the U.S. insurance industry, adoption for claims processing has been haphazard at best. Insurance carriers have been slowly bringing on mobile technology solutions to assist field workers with claims operations, yet the process has lacked focus and forward momentum.   Given the strides made by mobile technology vendors in functionality, bandwidth and devices, mobility solutions for the insurance industry are increasingly reliable - and can yield significant value if developed within a coordinated strategic initiative, says the report.   "Customers are increasingly expecting real-time, any-time service from their insurance carriers," said Karen Pauli, senior analyst in the TowerGroup insurance research practice in Needham, Mass., and author of the research. "While many insurers have various mobility irons in the fire, catastrophes like Hurricane Katrina quickly exposed the limits of the haphazard solutions that are in place. It's time for carriers to step back and create an enterprise strategy for mobility that encompasses all aspects of the claims process."   Highlights of the research include:   * Mobile initiatives will yield significant value for carriers when the implementation directly impacts the most critical business issues facing carriers today, including: disaster response; business continuity; and meeting regulatory and compliance mandates. The report also highlights the key actions carriers must take in order to create an effective mobile strategy.   * Carriers can improve day-to-day claims operations, gaining competitive advantage and saving costs, by using predictive analytics to direct activities in a mobile environment.   * Before carriers jump into an enterprise mobility plan, they must carefully review the needs and workflow of their claims personnel.   "Today, few carriers leverage the breadth of available mobile technologies that could contribute to claims process efficiency," continued Pauli. "Instead, it's more common to see stand-alone applications that have little to no integration with other claims applications or services. Stand-alones don't scale well, usually lack extensibility and cost too much. Carriers must develop a more holistic approach to claims mobility, one that arms the adjuster with the key devices and applications necessary to get the job done in the most efficient and effective way possible."   Source: TowerGroup

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