As the drive for business process efficiency continues full force, emerging competition between the Lloyd's and London market is helping push reform further.

Business process reform has well and truly arrived. Like it or not, the Lloyd’s and London markets are working towards modernising the way they do business whether it be claims, placing risks, or settling premiums.

The momentum is such that a touch of good old fashioned competition appears to be emerging between the two markets about who can get there first.

Last month the International Underwriting Association (IUA) took great exception to suggestions by Lloyd’s chief executive, Richard Ward that the company market was lagging behind the 319-year-old institution when it came to implementing electronic claims files (ECF).

According to information obtained by Ward, “businesses seem to agree with the principle of processing claims electronically but are having difficulty converting this into action. This is particularly the case in the company market where take-up is almost zero.”

The IUA struck back, insisting, "the company market’s record on market reform is at least as good as that of Lloyd’s.”

The apparent war of words developed a little further last week when the association gave an update on its progress, and another wiggle of the finger at Lloyd’s.

According to the IUA, the first wave of London companies will soon confirm their live use of ECF.

“The company market’s record on market reform is at least as good as that of Lloyd’s.

IUA chairman Stephen Riley

IUA chairman Stephen Riley said member firms were now ready to move forward after conducting an extensive pilot test of the new system.

He insisted the development of electronic claims files was as an extension of the existing Claims Loss Advice and Settlement System (CLASS).

“The company market has, as you know, operated a partial electronic claims facility for nearly 20 years,” said Riley.

Lloyd’s may have made initial strides ahead of its company counterparts in relation to ECF, but the IUA is keen to stress, both to its members and the outside world, that it is far from lagging behind Lloyd’s and recognised the need to automate claims long before the age-old market.

As Ward said himself: “[Competition] encourages efficiencies and innovation, leads to a better level of service to our customers and as a result keeps markets vibrant and dynamic.”

It would seem a little bit of competition between the two neighbouring markets is just what is needed to keep the momentum of change at full speed.


The electronic filing cabinet is a document repository that enables claims and premiums to be handled quickly and efficiently without the need for paper files.