Many insurance carriers understand the position in which Endurance Specialty Holdings found
itself: a sprawling architecture
that was increasingly difficult to
maintain and integration challenges from system to system.
According to Alfred Goxhaj,
CIO of Endurance, that was the
impetus for his company to look
for answers to those challenges. “We wanted an end-to-end
solution for the insurance business
across the board to address our U.S.
and international business,” he says.
Endurance also needed to address the issue of the speed of
product development. They needed a technology solution that
would allow the carrier to quickly roll out new products across
When there are various technologies participating in the
insurance life cycle, the timeframe companies need to build
new products is extended because of the difficulty of working
on multiple systems simultaneously.
“We tried in previous years, but it would take two years
to develop a product end-to-end,” says Goxhaj. “We wanted a
solution that would allow us to move quickly.”
Goxhaj explains that it was difficult for Endurance to de-
velop new resources so the decision was made to simplify the
infrastructure and put everything on a single platform.
“We increased the technology footprint in house and
reduced the number or resources needed to maintain the infrastructure,” he says.
The business side looked at a claims solution first and decided that Guidewire’s ClaimCenter had the capabilities Endurance
needed, according to Goxhaj.
Guidewire’s PolicyCenter also created a best fit for Endurance as a policy system, according to Goxhaj. Companies can
get all of the applications to be best-of-breed, but he believes a
product suite created the best fit for the Endurance shop.
“You have a single platform built on the same programming
language,” he says. “The resources you have can be moved from
policy to billing to claims. It’s not rocket science; it’s the same
technology. There are three modules so there is some integra-
tion work to be done, but for the most part it’s taken care of. If
you build the system correctly, integration will fall into place.”
With what he calls “disjointed technology,” Goxhaj believes
IT shops spend more than 40 percent of their time doing inte-
gration work when it comes time for implementation and that is
where carriers find the most defects. Removing that element of
risk, he feels, is beneficial from a technology perspective.
“Companies that have a complete end-to-end solution typ-
ically pump in a lot of R&D money into their technology,” says
Goxhaj. “Market leaders like Guidewire invest in their product
so you want to tie yourself to a boat that stays afloat. They have
a complete platform, they pump money into R & D, and they
have a vision. You can’t do better than that.”
Another trend in the implementation of core solutions is
that insurers contract with systems integrators (SI), typically
ones the solution provider has worked with in the past. Goxhaj
explains Endurance looked at an implementation partner, but
that path didn’t follow the carrier’s implementation paradigm or
its quality standards for resources and financial management.
“An SI likes to work on a black box with a fixed price with
resources that are expensive. That didn’t fit our bill,” he says.
“We hired people from small and medium-size companies and
we managed those resources with our managers here.”
Endurance developed an intensive training program with
internal resources. Goxhaj explains the chemistry from the
team composition—onshore and offshore—was done at an
“That helped us and now we have a stable team,” he says. “It
works well and we’ll continue that path as we move forward.”
“The quality was the most impressive thing,” he says. “As
we rolled out new products we brought in some changes. It is
working well for the business and IT because we don’t face the
crisis involved with overhauling things.”
Goxhaj believes when all is said and done, Endurance will
have one of the least expensive solutions in the market, but even
more important, the insurer will be able to respond to business
needs on short notice.
“Each product we roll out we accelerate the development
time,” says Goxhaj. “The speed of development and the quality
of the product are the key things everyone is excited about. We
are expanding the entire program rapidly.” ITA
The Best Is Yet to Come
Good things can happen in time when an insurer finds the right platform and the
best technology solution.
The Big Fix
By Robert Regis Hyle