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Customer Story: Renovation Underwriting Simplified Policy Admin to Launch Innovative Products

“Working with Insly has been a genuine pleasure. They’ve got a great product, their support and their willingness to engage with our complex requirements is second to none.

They’ve delivered a fully functional and intuitive underwriting platform to us with the minimum fuss. They’re a lovely bunch of people to work with too, so overall, we’re very happy with them.” 

  •   Matthew Dover, Head of Underwriting & Compliance at Renovation Underwriting 


Renovation Underwriting wanted to reshape their policy administration and move from legacy systems to new, innovative, and flexible insurance software. That kicked off a cooperation between Renovation and Insly.   

Renovation Underwriting needed an efficient solution to simplify policy administration and improve quote and bind functionality. Having experienced very significant growth, it was essential that Renovation Underwriting built in efficiencies to the underwriting and administration piece if they were to maintain their high customer service standards. 

Their legacy systems were not delivering for them. During the project, different insurance processes from quote and bind to accounting were integrated to a single platform to simplify policy admin and connect the underwriting, administration, and finance functions seamlessly.  


The Story of Renovation Underwriting  

Renovation Underwriting is an MGA, providing insurance for both private and commercial customers - whether they are renovating, extending, or altering property. They were initially a retail insurance broker offering general insurance products but, having spotted an opportunity in the form of a peace of mind contract works package for domestic and commercial renovators, they began the work of building a product which would achieve this. As this product took off, they were able to obtain delegated authorities to actually underwrite contract works risks in-house, and began to offer this on a wholesale basis, necessitating the change to an MGA set-up.  


Problem: Inefficient Policy Administration due to Legacy Software   

Before switching to Insly’s insurance software, Renovation Underwriting used another solution for policy administration. Unfortunately, it wasn’t a good fit for them, because:  

  • it was rigid and made implementation of change very difficult;  
  • the rating engine didn’t work properly, making it impossible to build in efficiency savings;  
  • the platform they were using was a legacy platform offered by the software developer and, as a result, very little resource was allocated to its maintenance and upkeep.   


Solution: Overhaul in Policy Administration to Launch Innovative Products  

To overcome the challenges in quote and bind, underwriting, and accounting, Renovation Underwriting and Insly designed and implemented an insurance platform for simplified policy administration. This platform has allowed them to increase efficiency and, therefore, volume massively across their three broad product types. 

  1. Renovation product - this was the first product the teams worked on. It was the most complex of the bunch, but today enables Renovation to enjoy the benefits that accompany fully automated and simplified policy administration, underwriting, and accounting features. 

The system not only introduces vital efficiencies into Renovation Underwriting’s operations. It also provides a much more user-friendly experience for their Broker clients. Brokers can log in to the system, fill in the submission form, and instantly submit a quote request to the Underwriters. Prior to submitting the quote, the Broker is provided with a premium indication, so at that point they are able to gauge whether or not the quote is going to be of interest to their customer. If the risk is submitted, the Underwriters are then able to consider the risk in the context of not only the risk information, but in the context of automatic pre-pricing for each of the markets available to them. This workflow also includes notifications to Brokers and Underwriters to speed up the quote and bind process. Finally, when the quote is approved, the Broker has the ability to bind the risk and can easily access policy documentation and send these to the customers. The current insurance platform really streamlines the work of Underwriters by providing automated rating engines. Renovation Underwriting can modify and set different conditions or rules, and override the system generated premium to truly make the rating engine their own. But perhaps the most beneficial aspect of the Insly platform to Renovation Underwriting is the seamless way it connects the quote and bind system to the accounts and finance system. This has generated massive efficiency savings for Renovation Underwriting and given them the confidence to scale up their operations. 

       2. Unoccupied -  this product operates in broadly the same way as the Renovation product. Brokers submit presentations, are provided with premium indications, and have the ability to bind approved quotes and access policy documentation at a click of a button. Currently the Unoccupied product only utilises one Insurer, whereas the Wholesale product utilises three. However, if Renovation Underwriting managed to obtain capacity for a second or a third Insurer for this product, the rating engine could be easily modified to return prices for the new Insurers as well as the original Insurer.

             3. Open Market products-  Renovation Underwriting conduct most of their business utilising delegated authority schemes and offer Renovation branded contract works and unoccupied packages. However, there is still frequently the need to supplement these offerings with additional policies sourced from the open market. This product enables Renovation Underwriting to run these ’open market’ transactions through the Insly system, ensuring that Broker statements include not only the scheme product transactions, but also open market transactions. It is a much simpler product, because it does not need to pre-price risks or generate any policy paperwork. It exists purely to consolidate the finance function into one system. 

The Open Market product is far from a standardised offering for Insly. However, having understood Renovation Underwriting’s specific need, we have been able to build a bespoke product to meet this need.



Renovation Underwriting’s needs fitted perfectly into Insly standardised products.   

The challenge in simplifying the policy administration system centred around the fact that the Wholesale product required a price comparison from three different Insurers for quoting. Usually MGAs provide a quote from one insurer per product. The ability of Renovation Underwriting to select one market from a panel of three providers is what makes this product so innovative.

The rating engine that sits at the core of price calculation has become much more complex as real-world experience of it’s operation has necessitated certain functionality enhancements which were not originally envisaged. Renovation Underwriting has added several conditions to make the rating engine much more sophisticated, and to ensure that bespoke requirements from Broker customers (for example, waiving of commission) can be handled with ease.   

Regarding policy documentation, a universal solution was required to handle all the necessary documentation for different Insurers and packages. We needed to build a generic and flexible document template that would enable the creation of multiple documents for each insurer.  

Flawless communication was key in this project. Both Renovation Underwriting and Insly committed to regular scoping and development meetings, and to prioritisation of testing. Without this commitment, the development of such a dynamic solution for simplified policy administration would not have been possible. Adjustments were made based on feedback, instead of assumptions. Excellent relationships were developed, enabling Insly to deliver the platform on time, within budget, and with the core functionality working as expected.  

The implementation was faster than usual. After the system was fully up and running, it took just a month to launch the Open Market product.  

In hindsight, the accounting side could have been handled more efficiently. If more time had been devoted to mapping exact needs and requirements, implementation of Insly’s insurance software would have been even more seamless.   


Next Steps   

In 2021, the focus has been on maintenance, reporting, and minor changes. Beyond this, Renovation Underwriting have contracted to migrate all of their products onto Insly’s newest platform. Whilst the product suite is operating perfectly on the current platform, Renovation Underwriting are looking to link their underwriting platform, website, and CRM systems to offer an even better broker experience. To achieve this, Renovation Underwriting will need the enhanced functionality of Insly’s latest platform offering. 

The migration offers additional benefits to Renovation Underwriting. In particular, the finance function is further simplified, development requirements can be handled more quickly and cheaply, and the generation of management information is enhanced.  

As an Insurer or an MGA, you might be facing challenges with legacy systems and organisational inefficiency as experienced by Renovation Underwriting. If you would like to simplify your policy admin and launch new products quickly and easily, why not get in touch to find out how Insly can help you!  

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