In order to fully understand the scope of DMS’s power, it’s just as useful to examine its strengths in operation as it is the consequences insurance companies face in absence of DMS: If an employee works for an insurance firm, that firm has neither duty to this employee’s indemnity nor fault in its own right amid security breaches for which the employee is culpable. This can result not only in costly lawsuits, but also in corporate infighting among employees and the organizations for which they work.
For example, The US Court of Appeals for the Seventh ruled in January of 2013 that a Nationwide Insurance accountant who lost clients’ sensitive files—including social security numbers, names, and birth dates of over 30,000 beneficiaries working with the firm—was held responsible for the incident. This created infighting between the culpable employee and the employee’s organization.
The accounting firm for which the employee worked, a division of Nationwide, was sued for $200,000; Nationwide consequently sought jurisdiction from Federal Court to establish that it had no duty to defend the accountant or accounting firm. The Supreme Court confirmed this motion.
The accountant stored this company information on a Compact Disc (CD), which was stolen from the accountant’s workspace by an unidentified thief—resulting in the breach and subsequent lawsuits. Had the information been stored within DMS, the thief would not have been able to retrieve, let alone locate, the stolen information, and the breach would never have occurred.
Instances such as this one are what prompt the Federal Insurance Office (FIO) In the US Department of the Treasury, to provide expertise and advice regarding insurance to the US Treasury. The FIO is the result of Title V of the federal Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 (Dodd-Frank). Offering advice on how document management software and similar enterprise technologies can be used in the insurance industry, its exhortations are also applicable to finance in general, because the FIO is also responsible for activities within the insurance sector that may result in a “systemic crisis to the broader financial system,” including data breaches, which resemble the aforementioned Nationwide breach mentioned above.
Ryan Utecht of New York Life Insurance Company will never find himself in a jeopardizing situation like the one mentioned above. He has implemented a comprehensive DMS system and has not experienced any troubles during or since:
“Before I started using eFileCabinet, I had three physical file cabinets and that was continuing to build. In any given week, I would spend at least an hour searching for old files and filing new information. Since implementing eFileCabinet . . . I spend under 20 minutes a week finding and filing the appropriate items electronically.
The insurance industry has more stringent, state- and federal-level regulations in the United States than practically any other industry. This is why big data, information management, and telematics (the branch of IT concerned with transmitting computerized information over long distances) put document management software at the forefront of the insurance industry. DMS offers a safe and secure alternative to telematics and information transmission in the insurance industry, offering enterprise-grade encryption in collaboration and sharing features.
Telematics, however, will remain as the initial information processor—relaying to claims adjusters and actuaries, for instance, information about vehicle collisions in real time. DMS will assist in making this information easily retrievable once it is stored, therein decreasing customer hold times on the phone—a very important facet of customer service in the insurance industry as many are already on the phone against their will. Ryan Utecht further notes how his relationship with customers has improved through eFileCabinet:
“Better yet is the mobile application that allows me to talk with a clients on the road, find the information they need on my iPhone through the eFileCabinet app, and get them an answer in minutes instead of usually the next day. . . . eFileCabinet is user friendly. I did not need a tutorial to begin putting my clients’ information into it. I downloaded the application on my desktop and began using it the same day. Within a week, I loaded the mobile app on my iPhone and was accessing client data immediately. If there are agents out there who are frustrated with the filing requirements in the financial services business, I highly recommend eFileCabinet. You’ll spend minutes tracking down client information, not hours.”
Additionally, linking documentation, often in paper format, to those who are insured and other parties involved in any kind of auto, life, home, or rental insurance claim is made easier through DMS. Making documents retrievable, accessible, actionable, and viewable is important in expediting the internal business process in the insurance industry for both employees and customers alike—so make the smart decision to deploy DMS before your competitors do and leave you in their rear view.
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