Ask not for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for carriers' legacy systems. At least that's the conclusion of a survey conducted by Guidewire Software Inc., a San Mateo, Calif.-based Web-based claims system provider.Three-quarters of property/casualty and workers' compensation carriers are engaged in significant claims system projects, according to Guidewire (see chart). "Mid-sized carriers are really biting the bullet-looking at what's in front of them and starting to take steps," says James Kwak, vice president of marketing at Guidewire. "So we're seeing many of them looking at replacing their claims systems."

Large carriers are also retiring their legacy systems, the survey found. But unlike, mid-sized carriers-who are replacing their older systems application by application, large carriers are taking a "hollowing out" approach-building new functionality on new technology, while continuing to run legacy applications alongside the new systems.

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