Earlier in May, I had the pleasure of attending TAI’s annual user group meeting. For those who have been long time clients of TAI, you’ll come to appreciate that this is one of the premier reinsurance-centric meetings in North America, and a fantastic meeting to network with peers and discuss trends & challenges encountered in reinsurance administration. As head of Marketing, I always encourage staff to speak at meetings and conferences, it is a great way to develop public speaking skills and also share our success stories and learnings. Brittainy and Lisa from our Reinsurance team delivered a breakout session that can act as a great resource to managers or new hires as they tackle the first weeks of their recently hired reinsurance administrators/analysts.
As a reinsurance pro you know that working with data is an integral part of your role. Many of you are using either a homegrown or professional reinsurance system to process data on a daily basis to maintain and administer reinsured policies. For assumed reinsurance, when a policy gets processed and data is received from the ceding company, the system attempts to perform several actions on it that range from Renewals, Status Changes, Face Changes, Terminations and more. But what happens when the action isn’t successfully carried out and the policy is not processed? The answer: An error occurs. BUT not to panic. Part of being a reinsurance analyst is dealing with error management. Today I’ll share with you three common errors I encounter when processing specifically within the TAI reinsurance system and how to overcome them. Regardless of what system you use, these may also be helpful to you.
A question that I often hear from life insurance and reinsurance professionals is ”what happens at the end of a term life insurance product?” Well, the answer is that once it comes to an end, you may have the option to convert it to a permanent product. Converting a policy happens quite often and in reinsurance, it is important to adhere to the terms of the treaty, otherwise, it will cause a downstream impact when claim time approaches. As a reinsurance analyst, we all struggle with administering conversions from time to time, especially in scenarios where there have been many amendments to a treaty or treaty information is difficult to identify. When I administer term conversions like these, there are three questions I typically ask myself to ensure I’m following the guidelines of the treaty. (PS – see here for a great overview of what a Reinsurance Treaty is as well as Seven Essential Components!)
Data integrity is the foundation of a reinsurance analyst’s job. In a general setting, data integrity means maintaining and assuring the accuracy and consistency of data over its entire life-cycle. As it relates to the entire life insurance business operation, data integrity means ensuring there is no mistranslation of transactional data between the insureds, life insurance companies, reinsurance companies and retrocessionaires. Imagine having your life insurance application rejected because your stated income was not filled in correctly. Imagine being charged a higher insurance premium than expected because your insurance rating was not translated correctly into the life administration system. Imagine only receiving 10% of your stated benefits because a zero was missing at some point in time during the transmission of your information between insurance and reinsurance parties
If you are in the realm of business, regardless of your field, you’ve more than likely read about, discussed or researched the topic of data and its impact on you. I know I have more than a handful of times! In our digitally driven world, the topic of data has been prominent over the past few years. Recently, I came across an article that, at least for me, discussed data with a fresh perspective. The author described data as a language that is used to tell stories – and not just in the business world but in everyday life. Running an upcoming marathon? The distance, your level of fitness and goal for time will inform the amount of training you need to do. Saving for retirement? Your standard of living, current income and family size are just some of the data that will inform how much you need to save annually. I could go on, but the point is, almost everything you do involves some kind of data that is used to tell a simple story. But so often in business we can get overwhelmed and caught up in data overload. This inspired me to think about how you can use data to tell a simple story about your business.
Administrative audits are a certainty in today’s reinsurance industry. And whether you’re a seasoned veteran auditor or a first time auditee, you’ll likely have the same question crossing your mind; “What are the findings going to be?” In many cases, as a reinsurance auditor with new staff or an untested or unproven audit program in place, you want to ensure that your audit team is providing an appropriate attestation of the auditees control environment. Whatever the context, to help you prepare for that upcoming audit, I’ve included a list of five common control gaps that our team of administrative audit experts have come across when auditing on behalf of our Reinsurance clients.
Have you ever been asked to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement or NDA? If you are in the insurance world, you’e likely had some degree of exposure to NDAs. But are you fully aware of what you are signing when it comes to these legal contracts? Or the impact it might have on you or your company? Regardless we’re breaking down the ABC’s of an NDA to ensure you know exactly what is expected when you sign an NDA.
As you know, approximately every four years we have what's called a leap year, a year with 366 days as opposed to 365. This additional day comes to us in February as the 29th day of the month. Intuitively, many of our clients would assume that 366 days in a year would affect the annual billing of their premiums, as one of the golden rules of annual premium calculation is to always divide by 365. So what happens in a leap year? Well, ultimately, I will address this question with this blog post, and share with you how leap years will not affect the calculation of your billed premiums. Let's learn more on how this is done.
There is an old saying that ‘Everyone is a rookie at least once’. For me, that’s exactly what I was last month when I attended my first RAPA Conference. Set against the backdrop of beautiful Phoenix, Arizona, we spent 2+ days exploring reinsurance topics ranging from data quality, client audits, post level term, and ending the final day with breakout sessions on best practices and lessons learned from our shared community of experts. I sat on a discussion panel with LOGiQ3's Brittainy Pratt, who has also shared her insights. What follows are some thoughts and reflections from that great event, in no particular order, from the perspective of a RAPA rookie:
Your company is in the business of reinsurance. You deal with mounds of data every day. You've turned to a professional reinsurance software to manage your reinsurance business process and it has been smooth sailing ever since. Today, the current regulatory and security environment is demanding increased protection for data centers and Personally Identifiable Information (PII) – which means it is time to consider an upgrade. From the calm skies above come the solutions of cloud services. To keep up with best practices, cloud solutions are the next step in streamlining customer implementation, speeding up the conversion process, and allow for smoother future upgrades. The cloud is the result of the progress of existing technologies, it aims to help users focus on their core business and leverages the product expert in the implementation process.