Rating Engines – Threat to Human Underwriters or the Ultimate Underwriting Aid?
Rating is a core success factor for insurers and MGAs, impacting directly their performance and business results. Rating can be done manually, using multiple spreadsheets and systems for data storing and calculations. This is laborious, error-prone, and extremely time-consuming. Insurers and MGAs can choose an alternative and use rating engines for efficient automated underwriting.
Rating Engines Simplify Insurance Product Pricing
Rating is an essential part of the quoting and underwriting processes. Rating engines store rating rules and price calculation formulas, algorithms, base rates and the rules necessary to combining them to calculate premiums.
Thanks to simplifying pricing and underwriting processes, rating engines enable business users to design, build, and test these algorithms and rate tables and support them when creating new insurance products. That is exactly how the Insly rating engine operates – once the rules are set, you have a green light to an efficient automated underwriting process. Non-technical users can do it all by themselves, no programming skills needed.
How to Design a Rating Engine?
Let’s take a look at how most rating engines work. Regardless of your rating engine is built-in Excel or on an online platform like Insly, there are four key components:
- input parameters for price calculation – the fields from your submission form that affect the price or underwriting rules;
- data lookup tables which define rates, deductibles, extra loadings, etc.;
- underwriting rules that determine if a risk gets quoted, declined, or referred for another decision-maker;
- calculation steps - the most important part for which built-in formulas and operations are used.
All of this can be built manually in Excel which takes a bit of skill. Platforms like Insly simplify the design of rating engines for efficient automated underwriting by using visual editors, user-definable test cases, and calculation logs which make it easy to see if your rating engine works correctly or spot the mistakes.
Rating Engine as a Service Brings Scalability, Flexibility, and High Performance
Automated rating engines are often built directly into insurance sales applications. This brings the benefits of process automation, but may have its limitations on scalability - what if you want to change the rates to optimise your portfolio performance? In this case, the distribution partners who rely on you in providing the rates might need to make a lot of changes to their integrations. That is a significant blocker for change in large distribution networks.
That’s where API-based rating engines for efficient automated underwriting can make an impact to future-proof your distribution. This is exactly why we built the Insly Rating Engine as a stand-alone service – it integrates seamlessly to other Insly modules but also enables your partners to use their own sales applications. The stand-alone architecture allows you to give API endpoints to your partners who can use these on their quote and bind applications or e-commerce sites. This ensures the freedom to change your rates whenever you need, without disrupting your entire distribution.
The Future of Pricing and Underwriting
As data availability increases and data-driven solutions are the drivers of competitive advantage, pricing models also change. They are shifting away from retrospective models based on risk history to future-looking predictive models with pricing sophistication at the forefront. Rating engines with an open and scalable architecture are the cornerstone of innovative data solutions that unlock new value for insurance companies and consumers.
For a short teaser of the Insly Rating Engine, watch the video or contact our sales today to see how we can help your business.
Automated Underwriting- using modern tools to take aspects of risk review and decision making and make them fully or partially automatic
Insly- online platform that helps build digital MGAs and Insurance companies
Quote and Bind- insurance sales process is broken into 2 key components- producing a quote for a particular risk and binding ( or "issuing") a policy
Rating engine as a Service- an online platform that allows underwriters to calibrate insurance premium calculation and underwriting rules and connect to other systems via API