Waterloo, Ontario - Manulife Financial reports that it is launching the Canadian insurance industry's first new business notification feed that meets new national standards for delivery of information to agencies and their advisors dealing with the company. The feed, once processed, allows agencies and their advisers to view the underwriting status of policies on a daily basis, greatly reducing time spent on inquiries and follow up calls about their clients' applications. The process is the first to meet new guidelines outlined by the Canadian Life Insurance Electronic Data Interchange Standards (CLIEDIS). "This is a significant advance in service to our Managing General Agencies and National Accounts. These organizations are focusing on improved technologies to increase their office and business efficiency so they can spend more time working with clients," said Andy White, AVP, Distribution Systems, Manulife Financial. New Business Notification feeds provided through this new standard contain current advisor, policy and underwriting status of new business pending policies, based on the Canadian Insurance Transaction Standardization (CITS) Pending Case Status Implementation Guide from CLIEDIS. The Canadian Life Insurance Standards Association coordinates development of public standards for the Canadian life insurance industry.  A distributor's feed will be available for download to its back office system through a phased launch on Manulife's advisor Web site, says the company. Manulife Financial is no stranger to best practice IT models, as the company has already made commitments in the areas of ITIL and CMMI, and expects their business units and subsidiaries in 19 countries to follow suit.  For example, as reported in Insurance Networking News (December 2006), Manulife-Sinochem Life Insurance Co. Ltd., a joint venture of Canada's Manulife Ltd. and China Foreign Economic and Trade Trust & Investment Co., designed a customer-oriented service at the front-end, which requires CRM system support at the back-end.  "Their product design is closely connected with the IT system and the IT accommodates the product quite well by playing a supporting role," says Thomas Wong, chief analyst at Beijing-based Analysys International. Source: Manulife Financial, Insurance Networking News

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