Earlier this year, GroupAssur – one of Canada’s fastest-growing P&C insurance providers – announced that it had partnered with Guidewire, thus ushering in its new digital transformation stage through Guidewire’s cloud-native platform.
But the transition has also included the use of a new insurance solution developed by EY, called Nexus – a middleware microservices integration layer with extensive service catalogues, API inventories, adapters, and domain-specific data models.
Neil Pengelly, EY’s Canadian insurance consulting leader who is based out of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, services all the needs of EY’s insurance clients across its P&C and life insurance sectors. He describes Nexus as an enablement platform that brings best-breed capabilities across a broad spectrum of software and business technologies to enable clients.
“The Nexus for Insurance platform provides a core system that is powered by Guidewire, with EY's Nexus assets. This allows the rapid deployment – in a matter of months versus years – of full-stack capabilities that provide them the pricing and underwriting functions they need to be able to deliver on their business, as well as a full-scale set of integrations,” he says, pointing out that the integration potential includes Lloyd's of London, alongside many other capabilities that allow GroupAssur to address the needs of their clients and insurers.
Nexus addresses rapidly changing technologies
David Connolly is EY’s global insurance technology leader. Based in the world-renowned tech space of Silicon Valley in California, he runs EY’s worldwide insurance technology and insurance innovation businesses, which includes Nexus.
According to Connolly, the reason Nexus is under that umbrella is that technology is changing so rapidly that insurance companies are, in many cases, struggling to keep up with the estimated 2000 or so insurtechs that have emerged in existing companies, such as Guidewire, Duck Creek, EIS and others.
“Our self-assigned job is to keep up with all of this and make it very easy for our clients to understand what technology can do for their business, as well as how to enable change at speed without bearing the burden of all the research required to figure out who to partner with,” Connolly says.
Fast deployment and the digital ecosystem
As technologies rapidly change, companies need to constantly stay ahead of the new innovations, which is why Nexus brings so much value. “Insurance companies in many cases are struggling to keep up with the roughly 2000 insured techs that have emerged let alone all the changes in the existing companies, such as a Guidewire and Duck Creek and EIS and others,” says Connolly. “Our self-assigned job is to keep up with all of this and make it very easy for our clients to understand what technology can do for their business, as well as how to enable change at speed without bearing the burden of all the research required to figure out who to partner with.”
Furthermore, insurance companies and their customers can't be serviced with one company alone, and therefore, partner ecosystem's becoming more and more important. “We are now seeing insurance companies partnering outside of property, casualty and life, if that's all they provide, with healthcare or with benefits. And why stop there?” says Pengelly, “Nexus is designed to be able to integrate, not only different technologies, but different companies at speed. And if the healthcare provider that you bolt into initially doesn't work out a couple of years later, you can unbolt them and put someone else in seamlessly without disrupting the customer experience. Nexus is designed to be able to support that.”
Nexus innovation has industry wide appeal
While the target market for Nexus has been the insurance space, the amount of change happening in technology and new business means the solution has much broader use cases.
“It doesn't stop with insurance,” says Connolly. “Banks have a need to replace their core and to get new products out at speed. Wealth management companies have the same need. Healthcare, automotive, health sciences, government and others are now all looking at the need for speed, if you will, and the Nexus platform is designed to be flexible, while the core of it will apply to any industry from a microservice perspective, as well as provide obsolescence protection.”
But, for now, the technology remains rooted in the insurance industry, as it manages the demands for greater agility. “The need for insurance companies to bring more agility into the market and get more products out based on customer preferences has never been stronger,” he concludes. “Nexus is positioned to support that.”