How Should Legal Ops Technology Support P&C Insurers?

Mitratech Holdings, Inc
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In a world where business moves faster than ever and where company results can be impacted by colossal external disruptions like a global pandemic, the stakes for the Office of the General Counsel and the legal department have never been higher.

For the past nine years, I have been a product marketer focused on the growing and changing technology needs of corporate legal departments.  The best part about my job is the amazing community of Legal Operations clients I get the pleasure to work with.

Co-innovating and sharing the best practices we have accumulated at Mitratech around utilizing technology to solve their unique business challenges is mutually rewarding and fun.  Our clients span geographies and industries, but my absolute favorite ones to work with are Property and Casualty Insurance Companies. Before I came to Mitratech, I spent 15 years in product management and marketing roles at Progressive Insurance.

Technology in support of growth

Progressive Insurance was an incredible company to work for and propelled my career in every way. The relationships and friendships I made there will last a lifetime, and I cannot even begin to say how important the experience was for both myself and my family. What people may not know is that Progressive was one of the first companies with direct online purchase of insurance, and the company took off and experienced exponential growth during my tenure there.

Progressive quadrupled in size during those 15 years, and as a result there were always initiatives around staffing, building and maintaining solid business process, and expanding the technology needed to manage the increasing workload. But we needed to think and act fast to keep up. Learning rapidly and showing a willingness to be creative and flexible were keys to success.

Flexibility is key

The legal departments for the P&C insurance companies that we serve connect to many other areas; it could be the claims department for litigation, the subrogation team, an investigations group, outside counsel, and directly with the insureds that they represent. But these insurance companies could not idly wait for technology; they had to develop good solid processes and best practices to deal with rapid growth.

That is why it is so important that any technology leveraged is flexible enough to reflect that process and best practice. Once achieved, digital automation of these workflows can create tremendous efficiencies in cross-functional collaboration and marked improvements in the claims experience.

That is why it is so important that any technology leveraged is flexible enough to reflect that process and best practice. Once achieved, digital automation of these workflows can create tremendous efficiencies in cross-functional collaboration and marked improvements in the claims experience.

Key tech questions for P&C insurers

When I am talking to a P&C insurer for the first time, some of the questions that help me understand the business problems Legal Operations is trying to solve include:

  • How are litigated claims passed to the staff counsel team? If using a manual process, important documentation and details may be missed during the transition. Process automation and integration to a Litigation Management solution can greatly increase staff efficiency and reduce errors.
  • How do your attorneys manage their claims today? A single source of truth for all emails, documents, tasks, and other artifacts including past claims can both shorten the claims lifecycle and reduce incidents of fraud.
  • How do you budget for claims litigation? Do you regularly review budgets with the intent to strategically reduce spend over time. Enterprise Legal Management can help you do just that.
  • Do you track the time of staff counsel and how it’s applied to your many insurance entities. There is an automated way to do it.
  • Do you have the tools necessary to effectively track the performance of outside counsel, such as a legal e-Billing system that manages invoices and provides the structure to enforce your negotiations? Does it understand the treatment of your panel firms? Legal Spend Management across different teams and legal practice areas is key to collecting the data you need to effectively negotiate and reduce rising expenses over time.

The answers to these questions generally lead to great conversations on how to improve the use of technology, and point toward some of the ways we can help transform any business.

Insights from two experts

Even though I have the background to talk insurance with the best of them, I am still learning.  That is why I’m so excited to have the privilege to interview two true subject matter experts who have spent even more time than myself in the P&C field.

 
 

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