Once an insurance carrier has justified the business case for its policy administration system (PAS) replacement, designed a transformation roadmap, selected a vendor partner, mobilized its implementation, and is successfully managing the execution and change, one daunting task remains: The conversion of its book of business onto the new system. While the beauty of conversion may be that it is a one-time effort, the beast is that every single account and/or policy must be touched in order to effectively complete it. Therefore, an organization should carefully consider what it will take to facilitate a successful conversion effort and minimize the impact on itself, its agency force, and its customers.

Converting to a new PAS is much like running a race. Preparation is critical, regardless of the distance. Therefore, considering the level of effort required, carriers need to begin planning their conversion strategies early on. Just as one would train months in advance for a marathon, it's critical to perform due diligence up-front to assess conversion options, define a sound strategy, and ease the experience for those involved. Moreover, early preparation should provide ample time to align the interests of all conversion constituents, a group that ranges from agents and customers to IT and finance.

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