Below is the final of 13 Novarica Research Council Impact Award nominee case studies that INN is presenting, in no particular order. The awards were planned to be announced today, October 30, at Novarica’s first annual Research Council Impact Awards. As a result of Storm Sandy, the event and award presentation have been rescheduled for November 14th. INN will announce the winner at that time. Until then, take a look at all 13 nominees here.

Allstate Financial launched an initiative in 2010 to legally bind an electronic signature to a life insurance application via the Internet. Since launch, electronic signature use increased from 57 percent (through the electronic signature pad) to 73 percent, including signature pad and the new signature option, with 30 percent coming from the new application.

The project took one year and involved 118 IT employees and fewer than 10 vendor staff, who helped create functionality that sends out e-mails throughout the process. Offshore development and testing resources also were utilized. To overcome the challenges of project scope, schedule, testing and roll-out, the team broke the project into multiple smaller projects. The project and timeline were managed through an agile testing methodology, and a “war room” approach helped with testing challenges. 

Business sponsors provided the project requirements, participated in project team meetings and the creation of field communication and training, encouraged pilot users to participate, and assisted with issues they encountered.

The project contributed to a significant increase in life sales volume and made technology easier for agents and customers, furthered green technology, and saved the cost of paper, ink, postage and shipping.

Agents are able to close new business deals faster. The company attributes a technically strong, focused project team, producers’ desire for an easier signing option, and support from business sponsors, as critical success factors.


About the awards: Novarica’s first annual Research Council Impact Awards honor best practices in insurance industry IT initiatives and strategy. Nominees were selected across four categories—Practice, Quick Hit, Transformation and Expansion—with three nominees chosen for each (a tie in the Expansion category meant four nominees were selected). The nominees were selected by a committee from a collection of case studies drafted by Novarica from submissions by insurers. 

The nominating committee included CIOs Andy Wood (Wilton Re), Dan Simpson (Trustmark), Eric Bulis (SBLI USA), Larry Fortin (Millers Mutual Group), Mark Berthiaume (Chubb), Pete Moreau (Amica), Piyush Singh (Great American Insurance Company), Reuben Broadfoot (LifeMap), Sal Abano (Tower Insurance), Stuart Tainsky (PURE) and Tim Billow (ING).

Winners will be determined by votes from the more-than-300 members of the Novarica Research Council, a moderated knowledge-sharing community of insurer CIOs and senior IT executives.

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