Reston, Va. — NAVA Inc., the association for insured retirement solutions, announced a new service to help insurers, annuity distributors and technology solutions providers ensure that their electronic data messages are compliant with NAVA’s Straight-through Processing (STP) Standards Initiative. STP is an industry-backed initiative establishing an automated standardized process that streamlines the sale of annuities.

The NAVA Message Testing Service (MTS) is designed to provide implementers of the STP Standards Initiative with an easy-to-use tool to expedite the testing of electronic data messages against a neutral, standard reference system. These data messages, which were developed by the NAVA Data Conformity Working Group, define a uniform data structure for sharing electronic information between insurers and distributors. MTS also provides a means of verifying and recognizing organizations using conforming data messages to promote consistency and compatibility throughout the industry. The MTS tool will be available in mid-November.

VERTEX Inc., a provider of professional services and innovative software to the financial services industry, is one of the first organizations to use MTS. Based on initial testing, two VERTEX data messages have been certified as STP-compliant.

“VERTEX realizes the importance of NAVA’s STP Standards Initiative with respect to enabling the interoperability between distributors and carriers,” says Suzanne Brazeal, VERTEX’s eB2B AVP. “The MTS service provides us with a reliable method and quick confirmation that our automated NAVA Product Profile for Annuities and NAVA Distributor Profile transactions are certified STP-compliant.”

“STP is the first program of its kind to define an industrywide, standards-based electronic annuity sales process to facilitate compatibility among all industry trading partners,” says Deborah Tucker, VP of NAVA. “Ensuring that all data messages are uniformly implemented across all electronic systems exchanging information related to annuity business will help the industry promote transparency, streamline processes and minimize errors, and also will provide significant bottom-line benefits. MTS is an important element in our ongoing effort to facilitate industry-wide adoption of STP-compliant technologies and services.”

The NAVA MTS, which is based on the open source tool, OpenMTS, will be available via a subscription service that will automatically provide subscribers with updates to new NAVA STP message specifications as they are published. In the future, NAVA also will offer a message certification service that goes one step beyond the testing service to provide third-party validation that data messages are STP-compliant. The NAVA STP specifications are based on the ACORD Life, Annuity and Health Data Model.

Source: Business Wire

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