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APIS and the IA Distribution

ACT News Meeting Edition - June 2019

ACT Meeting June 2019 ACT News.pngPresenter: Jason Kolb, DAIS Technology


Application programming interfaces (APIs) allow apps and programs to talk to each other.


Airbnb is a great example. It is the largest hospitality company and owns no real estate; Uber is the same with cars. They rely on APIs to create the interface between the customer and the service provider.


A software developer builds the API based on what you want it to do and whom you want to connect. Standardization is crucial to make apps work among the many different players: insurers, users, carriers, different agency management systems, different customer devices.


Uses: Carriers have developed APIs for use on their own portals. Independent agents dont really have access to these APIs. But online competitors DO!


Carrier uptake rates for capabilities that rely on APIs are low except for underwriting and rating.

  • Clearance: 2 out of 10 have this capability
  • Underwriting: 7 out of 10 have this capability (gives agencies visibility into underwriting rules and carriers ability to move in and out of markets)
  • Rating: 7 out of 10 have this (given exposure data, the software can generate a price)
  • Binding: 2 out of 10 have this capability; if additional data are required to bind, API gives visibility to that data and a way to provide it
  • Product: 0 out of 10 have this
  • Claims: 3 out of 10 have this
  • Loss: 0 out of 10 have this
  • Billing: 1 out of 10 have this


Using ACTs polling system, Jason posed a few questions to the audience and received instant answers...


Which workflow aspects create the biggest amount of waste?

  • Redundancy between agency and carrier: 26% of respondents chose this
  • Workflow inefficiency: 26%
  • Disconnected systems: 13%
  • Legacy technology: 1%
  • Data quality: 10%


How can agencies win from APIs? APIs can help with the following:

  • Augment procedures
  • Digitize workflows
  • Automate intake
  • Experiment with different processes
  • Bring products to life
  •  Create a digital agency


Audience Q&A

What are some data that could be shared without increasing cyber risk?

Anonymized data. If you can share data with your carrier, you could be more valuable as a partner. But the idea of sharing data didnt sit well with some agents, who say collecting that data is expensive and they dont want that effort to benefit those who didnt invest in its collection.


How you can help drive us forward?

1.       Think about how API connectivity will impact your agency.

2.       Contribute to the ACT API working group.

3.       Focus on cyber-security maturity.

4.       Start thinking about data privacy.


 From the Editor: Learn more about DAIS Technology here. Also, access more highlights from the May 2019 ACT Meeting here!  

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