Milliman Arius: Reserve Analysis with an End-to-End Solution

By Milliman
Insurers face risks and errors with current reserve analysis methods – and Arius provides the answer

Many insurers currently use outdated reserving processes and tools, especially old fashioned spreadsheets, often updated year after year and shared among users across teams. This risky practice not only creates significant compliance and governance risks, it also jeopardises accuracy and efficiency.

Although Excel is a familiar tool, it’s not designed for the rigours of modern reserving. The manual processes, risk of errors, and difficulty in handling large datasets and sophisticated models underscore the need for a more robust, integrated solution designed for the complexity and scale of today's insurance reserving challenges.

Problems insurers currently face with reserve analysis include:

  • Storing and analysing essential data in volatile spreadsheets
  • Spending hours on mundane data tasks
  • Making costly errors with repetitive human processes

“If you’re using one spreadsheet for all of your reserving, you have a data governance problem. If you’re using multiple spreadsheets for your reserving, you have an operational risk problem.”

–Brian Fannin, Actuary

Arius Enterprise® from Milliman offers a solution to all these problems, effectively re-engineering the reserve analysis process.

Data-driven decision making

Arius® provides a repository of all data the actuaries might need for their review. Direct access to granular data – in some cases, even billions of claim records – supports fast, reliable aggregation at any level of detail that helps their analysis. Analysts can easily build queries for regular and ad-hoc projects, and data is provided to them in Arius, ready for analysis. In short, they have better data for better decision-making.

The system automates routine reserving tasks that are prone to human error, and frees up actuaries for deeper, more strategic work. The efficiency of Arius is felt by the entire reserving department, making quarterly file preparation up to 10 times faster, saving organisations significant time and money before analysis even begins. One insurer saved over 700 hours per quarter by modernising with Arius Enterprise.

Arius was designed specifically to eliminate the risks of storing and working with important data in spreadsheets and across multiple users. A cloud-based platform for reserve analysis, Arius Enterprise safely stores data and analysis work in Microsoft’s secure Azure SQL database platform, which is critical for today’s compliance requirements. To meet the demands of some of the industry’s largest and most sophisticated carriers, the Arius team went even further, joining forces with Microsoft to expand the system’s database capabilities with Azure Data Explorer, providing unparalleled efficiency and security with very large data sets. Azure’s data and scaling capabilities also boost performance—data loads run in half the time, and a traditional 20-minute query can be executed in less than a minute.

Transitioning from spreadsheets to Arius Enterprise significantly enhances the governance framework around your reserve analysis. Arius's structured environment and control features enable you to implement robust governance policies – user and access controls, logging and journaling, templated analysis, project management, etc. –, so that analyses are performed consistently and in alignment with your organisation's risk management policies. This modernization not only elevates the reliability of reserve estimates but also reinforces accountability and oversight. Both your reserving department and your audit team will sleep better at night.

More than data management and governance, Arius gives actuaries a powerful suite of both industry standard and leading-edge actuarial, analytical, and reserving tools. Arius simplifies the data extraction process, and seamlessly connects with reporting and visualization tools. This integration transforms complex analysis into accessible, visual insights, streamlining our communication and decision-making processes. All of which delivers better business information for better decisions.

Milliman is the leader in actuarial tech. Their actuarial and tech consultants handle most of the implementation, working closely with your team. They help you test the solution in your environment, and they train your professionals. Instead of waiting months to enjoy the benefits of Arius, Milliman can typically have you up and running in weeks. A similar in-house solution could take years and cost substantially more. Milliman has continually advanced Arius’ capabilities by  learning from leading insurers over the last 25 years, and all Arius clients automatically get the benefit of this collective and technological and actuarial wisdom.

Shifting away from outdated methods is critical to the success of today’s insurers. Arius automates mundane tasks, freeing actuaries to prepare complex analyses more efficiently and with fewer resources. It centralises data and analytical workstreams, eliminating error-prone human processes involved with managing, updating, and relying on Excel year after year. 

With Arius, actuaries focus on brilliant analysis instead of managing risky spreadsheets.


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