Like perfection, Straight-through processing (STP) is something many insurance company IT departments are striving for but may find hard to call fully conquered.

"Straight-through processing in the insurance industry is not something you can buy and install," says Matt Josefowicz, an analyst with New York research firm Celent LLP. "It's the practice of integrating all your systems and adopting a consistent data standard and implementing that. It's something to aspire to, rather than something that carriers can just make happen with a single project."

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