Xceedance/Insurtech Insights/Blog Posts/From Legacy to Leadership: How Duck Creek Empowers P&C Insurers

From Legacy to Leadership: How Duck Creek Empowers P&C Insurers

By Soma Nag, Director – System Integration Services (Duck Creek), Xceedance

The Property and Casualty (P&C) insurance industry has been slow in catching the Digital Transformation train even though the market is pegged to grow at an 8.5% CAGR till 2027. This has resulted in several insurers still using legacy systems while the other sectors moved towards new-age technologies, including AI. A big challenge that the insurers faced is the time and cost of this digital transition. And this is where the Duck Creek Platform brought a bouquet of innovative solutions to the landscape. The solutions, that brought in automation and reduced manual work, have also seen constant upgrades ever since it came on the scene. However, there are challenges that upgrades of the Duck Creek Suite bring, of which insurers should be aware.  

Why (P&C) Insurance Uses the Duck Creek Suite?

However, before we venture into the challenges, let’s take a quick look at what Duck Creek Technologies stands for amongst the top solution providers for P&C insurance systems. It offers a transformative solution through the Duck Creek Suite, built on low-code configuration and an open architecture, which empowers insurers to efficiently manage their P&C operations. It equips organizations with a data-integrated platform, providing cutting-edge digital solutions across policy administration, rating, claims, billing, and insights. 

Challenges in Upgrading Duck Creek Technology 

While the promise of technological advancement is alluring, upgrading from a lower to a higher version of Duck Creek Technology can be a multifaceted endeavor, full of challenges. These challenges, if not navigated meticulously, can impede the efficiency and success of the upgrade process. The challenges can be: 

  • Complexity of Integration: Integrating the new version seamlessly with existing systems and processes is complex. A survey notes that while more than 90% are working on enhanced operational efficiencies, about 54% say they are behind schedule on addressing integration challenges. Ensuring the upgraded version aligns with the intricate web of interconnected tools, databases, and workflows requires meticulous planning and execution. 
  • Data Migration Concerns: One of the cornerstones of a successful upgrade is the smooth migration of critical data from legacy systems to the advanced version. The sheer volume of data, coupled with the need to retain data integrity and accuracy, can pose significant challenges. Insurers must meticulously map data fields, cleanse data, and ensure that the transition is as seamless as possible. 
  • Customization and Testing: While the new version might offer an array of advanced features, customizing them to meet the specific needs of the insurer is paramount. Customizations often involve configuring the system to cater to unique business processes, user interfaces, and functionalities. Rigorous testing is essential to ensure that these customizations are error-free and compatible with the rest of the ecosystem. 
  • Change Management: Introducing a higher version involves acclimating users to a new interface and potentially revised workflows. The challenge lies in making the transition intuitive and user-friendly. According to industry reports, successful user adoption strategies can reduce post-upgrade disruptions by up to 50%. Insurers must invest in comprehensive training and resources to ensure smooth user adoption, minimizing disruptions during the critical post-upgrade phase. 
  • Availability of Expertise: Upgrading Duck Creek Technology demands a significant allocation of resources, both in terms of personnel and finances. According to an industry analysis, organizations with dedicated technical teams report up to 30% faster upgrade cycles compared to those without. It requires a skilled team with deep technical knowledge of the existing system and the intricacies of the new version. Insufficient expertise can lead to delays, errors, and unforeseen challenges during the upgrade. 

By addressing these challenges proactively, insurers can lay a strong foundation for a successful upgrade and position themselves to harness the full potential of the enhanced Duck Creek Technology. 

Impact of an Upgrade Gone Wrong 

A failed upgrade can have far-reaching consequences, affecting various facets of an insurer’s operations: 

  • Operational Disruption: A botched upgrade can disrupt day-to-day operations, leading to delays, errors, and frustrated stakeholders. 
  • Customer Dissatisfaction: Inaccuracies in policy administration, billing, or claims processing can undermine customer trust and satisfaction. 
  • Financial Implications: Errors in rating and billing could lead to financial losses and regulatory compliance issues. 

Warning Signs and Insights: Red Flags to Watch For 

If you are an insurer who is planning to upgrade to a higher Duck Creek suite version, here are some insights to identify warning signs and navigate potential pitfalls during the upgrade process: 

  • Inadequate Testing: Insufficient testing or skipping crucial steps can spell disaster. Comprehensive testing is vital to uncover vulnerabilities. 
  • Lack of Stakeholder Engagement: Failing to involve all stakeholders from IT to business users can lead to misalignment and miscommunication. 
  • Absence of Clear Communication: Transparent communication about the upgrade’s progress, expected changes, and potential impacts is crucial. 
  • Limited Training: Inadequate training for end-users can result in resistance to change and hinder the adoption of the upgraded system. 

Suffice it to state that challenges are aplenty. Xceedance is the only Duck Creek Systems Integrator (SI) with an insurance-only focus, having experience around more than 250 products. Our dedicated team of 300+ professionals have an enviable track record of implementations across the United States, Australia and New Zealand, Europe and India. Xceedance functions as a leading partner for Duck Creek Reinsurance and Data Insights implementation for clients. A focus on specialty lines and commercial lines implementations ensure faster, smarter and more efficient outcomes for the clients.

September 15, 2023