ACC shifts gear with major IT investment

Accident Compensation gets ready for competition with new front-end systems

Facing the prospect of private sector competition, the Accident Compensation Corporation is gearing up its technology to deliver more flexible services and to work in a “more businesslike manner”.

The corporation is planning to invest in what it calls an “integrated insurance solution” in what some industry sources say will require a multi-million dollar transformation project.

“ACC is seeking a technology solution to replace legacy systems that are no longer fit for purpose and which have had minimal investment for at least eight years,” the ACC’s Diane Bradley, who is responsible for the project, told Computerworld.

The system will also allow ACC to meet the requirements of the Bill currently before Parliament, to provide experience rating — no claim bonuses — and other risk sharing among other functions, she says.

Bradley says it will also allow ACC to connect some of its existing but isolated technology solutions.

“For example the system that handles claims is separate from the system that calculates levies. The new offering will allow us to bridge that gap,” she says.

The system will also enable a higher level of levy payer self-service and deliver greater efficiencies, better data and better customer service, she says.

A tender document released last week fleshes that out and also reveals significant back-end architecture changes to support the new system.

The document says ACC seeks technology that supports standard insurance policy administration, customer relationship management, product management and new management functions. The requirement includes modules for sales management and quoting, and underwriting.

The project is to be introduced in phases over three years.

Currently, core systems are provided by Sun, Oracle and IBM. Microsoft provides the office software.

Over the past few years, ACC has been implementing and upgrading a claims management system from Irish company Fineos. The new software will have to integrate with EOS, the Fineos claims system.

The RFP says also that ACC is seeking to reduce the numbers of servers by 70 percent through virtualisation and consolidation.

It notes that the application server for its integrated premium system is unsupported and that the database is due to be unsupported next month.

Also, the Java code has been superceded.

“Significant investment will be required,” ACC says.

Several other major functions are said to be out of scope.

Insurance industry sources say private insurers have dusted off their competitive proposals from the late 1990s when the market was briefly opened up to competition.

ACC posted a loss of $4.8 billion in its most recent financial year. The government subsequently introduced a Bill to raise levies and cut some entitlements amidst a debate about whether ACC was an insurance company at all and whether it should have to fully fund its future liabilities.

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