Prices can now be set and rolled out in one day instead of necessitating a six week wait via the traditional process

Two years ago, Sabre Insurance began looking around the market for a system that would give them the best options in terms of servicing, product change, rates and flexibility.

Enter CDL.

After a six to nine month tender process, the motor insurer moved its pricing and direct insurance platforms to the insurtech this July, which saw Sabre launch on Proteus – CDL’s cloud-based insurer hosted pricing (IHP) hub for mass market distribution.

This move allows Sabre to present its rates to brokers in real-time via the IHP, with the ability to easily amend rates.

Traditionally, insurers set their rates before sending these to their broker software house. Between a month and six weeks later, those prices are then rolled out to brokers’ front end systems.

Speaking exclusively to Insurance Times, Sabre Insurance chief executive Geoff Carter said: ”Now that six weeks becomes one day. But the most important thing for us is the flexibility of that pricing.

“We have done two things at the same time – put a new platform in place and launch IHP – which has almost become a subset of the main project and allows us to roll out much more sophisticated pricing in the market. CDL came out top in both of those open market tenders.”

Carter said the decision to implement a system that allowed the firm to go direct to customer was something that it fell into as a backup option, but it would allow customers to manage their policies online and make mid-term adjustments to renewals. The insurer has operated a direct book for around eight years that now boasts around 100,000 policies.

The insurer said it could now also roll out its machine learning component, which it had previously found tricky to get to broker systems as there were constraints.

Carter explained: “We are [now] not constrained by the inputs and outputs or software house we can use, we can develop our own prices and put that price to CDL straight to the brokers, rather than to the system.

”That means we can roll out sophisticated prices.”

Further innovation 

In the broker market, there are around five major software houses – CDL, however, is a Software as a Service (SaaS) cloud-only insurtech that provides low and no code solutions.

The insurtech said it was now focused on further innovation following the deal with Sabre. Its chief executive Nigel Phillips said: “While we have a great platform that delivers to Sabre’s needs, we now want to move it onto the next level. 

“One of the critical elements is to enhance the engagement that Sabre can have with its customer base. It’s not just about finding a good price at new business or trying to keep them at renewal, its about engaging with the customer throughout their policy lifecycle.

“It’s also about finding the right moments, perhaps where the policy risk can be adjusted according to the circumstances that the risk holder may well have. It’s about trying to change that engagement model and that’s one of the big features that we are looking at currently.”

Phillips noted that the insurtech ran a “discovery activity” to ensure that everything it planned to deliver was laid out clearly.

CDL has brought an ecosystem of partners operating in the UK insurance industry onto its platform to enable transactions to be performed easily, he added.

“That way, you end up with a much smoother process of projects, deployment and a greater certainty of delivering on time and to schedule. What we are trying to do is make sure it is easier for Sabre to distribute their rates across the market without any technical challenges,” Phillips continued.

”The changes in technology that creates a level playing field and provides competitive advantage. When you operate in a market whereby most insurers participate in one place, you have to make sure your product proposition is suited to the customer.”

Quote efficiency 

Likewise, Carter added: “One of the big benefits we are looking for is customer self-service [as] we have had far too many staff on the phone having to do [simple] queries.”

Phillips noted that many of the big insurers were generating 700,000 quotes per day on price comparison websites.

Carter continued: “We ‘unquote’ around a million quotes per day so we need a system that is rock solid. There will still be just as many quotes, but we can be confident in how we handle them.

“The more efficient we can be in talking to customers, the better it must be all round. It’s all about trying to make things as easy as they can be for the customer as well as it being cheap for us – because the cheaper it is, the cheaper the price can be. It’s about being able to roll out more sophisticated pricing.”

This means premium prices can be kept down, which benefits customers, added Carter.

Phillips said that customers that started their journeys digitally generally wanted to “continue with that digital relationship”.