This week marks a year since I climbed over the fence from being a user of a certain IBA processing software product, working in a small London market broking house, to an employee of the very same software vendor. The last 12 months have been very much an ‘eye opener’ and I’d like to share my top 5 observations.

  • GIGO (‘Garbage In/Garbage Out’)

Data integrity is crucial. Whilst human error is inevitable, having a robust IBA processing system requires skilled staff who truly understand why they do what they do, and what implications it might have further down the line.

  • Training

Investing in good quality training, whether technical business knowledge, soft skills, or software specific training, done in-house or by an external provider, is vital. If you want to get the best out of your people, give them the tools to do their job efficiently and encourage a culture of lifelong learning.

  • Investment

Continuing investment in your chosen product, both of financial and time resources, should be factored in to any business operation, as market and technological reform continue apace.

  • Communicate and Collaborate

Communicate and collaborate with your software vendor. We are not your enemy! If you are trying to develop a new product or more efficient way of working, start the conversation with your vendor at the earliest stage possible.

  • Patience is a virtue

An integrated end-to-end insurance administration platform, with 300+ programs and multiple data tables is quite complicated! As a user, “could you just add….” may seem like a quick fix, but in reality probably means many hours of business analysis, translation, development, testing, tweaking, and re-testing.

It's rewarding working for a software house that values its client service levels. I look forward to the continuing challenge of helping clients to appreciate the powerful tool at their disposal and how to get the most out of it.