Extensible Markup Language enables carriers to reach a higher plateau within their data exchange strategies. But many experts also tout XML's ability to integrate disparate systems.Wausau Insurance Co. is among an increasing number of carriers that understands the importance of using the Internet to conduct business. But operating efficiently on the Web has been an elusive undertaking for carriers like Wausau and its business partners for one fundamental reason: Lack of end-to-end convergence between back-end mainframe computers makes it difficult to process transactions in a crisp and timely fashion.

Determined to remedy this communication dilemma, the Wausau, Wis.-based insurer in late 1999 began using Extensible Markup Language, or XML, as its electronic data interchange protocol.

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