Sponsored content: Dave Chapman, chief revenue officer at Applied Systems Europe, sits down with Insurance Times to discuss trends in broker software platforms

What developments have been made at Applied Systems over the previous 12 months and what has been the focus of this work?

Dave Chapman_Applied Systems Europe

Dave Chapman 

We’re industry specific, so we focus on insurance rather than just technology. In the last 12 months we’ve focused a lot of our work on broadening out our commercial lines and eTrading panel and have made significant strides in bringing on additional carriers, with five joining in 2022 and intentions to add another four over the early part of this year.

For us, eTrade is a hot topic and we focus a lot of effort on ensuring that the underlying technology can support it. The key to our success and the success of our clients is ensuring that our technology is as modern, open and flexible as it can be.

We’ve also invested heavily in application programming interface (API) technology. At Applied we’re an API first business so we ensure that every capablity that sits within our admin platform is accessible from a suite of APIs, meaning our system is easy to integrate to – whether that is new new technologies or new partnerships. 

The major trend trend that we’re seeing is clients expecting far more from their insurance technology provider than before. It may seem like the pandemic was a long time ago, but what it has done for our industry is open everyone’s eyes to how capable some technology platforms are versus others. 

The pandemic also brought about the realisation that digitalisation wasn’t actually as difficult as it was made out to be – we certainly saw, looking at our installed customer base throughout the pandemic, more customers wanting to become digital. 

Digital is a relatively short word, but what it means to us is giving our clients the ability to give their clients choice and flexibility as to how to interact with them. 

We are now seeing a lot of our success coming from the commercial lines market – if you added up the business mix and averaged it across our customer base you’d now see that more of our clients lean more heavily towards commercial lines than personal lines, 

How are broker software platforms continuing to transform the insurance industry? 

For us, transforming the insurance industry is all about making the process of insurance as efficient and smooth as possible. We’ve built a whole suite of APIs across our platform that mean any functional task can be carried out in an automated way, rather than requiring an individual to push a button. 

Where we see the market going is the insurtech model, where we use and adopt the type of technology that you see on Amazon or in other modern types of customer interaction. 

What we’ve been able to do by leveraging investment from the likes of Google is take the everyday consumer technology and put our expertise in broking on top of it to drive automation and efficiency. This allows brokers to really focus on delivering their insurance expertise to customers, rather than having to worry about mundane and manual tasks. 

What features are brokers demanding from you as a software platform provider? 

We very much see our interactions with brokers as a partnership, allowing us to bring our expertise to bear to find the most relevant technology use cases for the client. 

In terms of what our brokers are talking to us about, the use of artificial intelligence and automation is very much at the forefront of what we’re doing.What we’ve tried to do alongside that though, is build an engaged user community who will update us on the latest things they want to achieve.

In this industry we often talk about regulation with customers, because we want to understand our clients’ interpretation of the rules and what it means for their day-to-day business. In doing this, we actively encourage product advisory committees to get involved with us and drive product direction.