Earthquake Commission of New Zealand

Product: ClaimCenter
Line of Business: Personal
Region: Asia-Pacific

The Earthquake Commission of New Zealand (EQC) is New Zealand’s primary provider of natural disaster insurance to residential property owners. A Crown entity, EQC insures against damage caused by earthquake, natural landslip, volcanic eruption, hydrothermal activity, tsunami, storm, or flood, or by fire that is caused by any of these.

EQC sought to improve its claims capabilities with an “anytime/anywhere” web-based claims system that was easily accessible by a remote workforce—regardless of their location—and could instantly scale as its business demanded. EQC’s claims volume can surge from an average of 3,000–4,000 claims annually to 100,000–200,000 in the event of a large-scale natural disaster in an urban area. 

EQC selected IBM to lead this strategic claims project, which included solution design and development as well as software selection, configuration, and deployment. After extensive and careful evaluation, Guidewire ClaimCenter™ was chosen because it is a proven, modern, end-to-end claims management system that can be readily configured to meet EQC’s specific requirements. EQC also selected IBM to host and manage its ClaimCenter Implementation for an initial term of 10 years.

ClaimCenter is now providing EQC the ability to use modern technology to support and advance its business processes; modernize its technology platform to ensure cost-effective and flexible system support; better manage claim activities and adjuster workflows through automated activity-driven task assignments; gain visibility into adjuster workloads and claim status; and reduce training times for new users.

An aspect of EQC’s implementation, and a good example of ClaimCenter’s flexibility, is the integration of ClaimCenter's catastrophe-management functionality with GeoNet (a New Zealand government organization that details all earthquake activity in New Zealand) and the integration of ESRI’s geographic information system (GIS). When an earthquake occurs in New Zealand, GeoNet seismographs record the event and send earthquake event details to EQC, which creates a new event in ClaimCenter. Then a boundary is automatically drawn by the GIS so that relevant claims within the boundary can be automatically linked to that event. Events of significant magnitude result in event work-plan creation and the setup and assignment of property inspection teams, including remote offices (EQC is a single-site organization with just 23 staff), to manage claims for the specific event.

Our adjusters, claims staff, and managers absolutely love the system and all the functionality improvements that have come with it. ClaimCenter’s electronic claim file and online notes keep everyone updated on a claim’s status, freeing the adjuster to focus on managing the EQC/claimant relationship instead of continuously providing status reports.
Lance Dixon, Insurance Manager, Earthquake Commission of New Zealand, Earthquake Commission of New Zealand
We found the Guidewire application to be easy to configure and straightforward to implement and integrate with EQC’s other systems. This is a great example of IBM’s ability to provide software-as-a-service and it highlights the real value proposition IBM provides clients.
Bill Doak, IBM Global Business Services Partner, Asia-Pacific, Earthquake Commission of New Zealand, Earthquake Commission of New Zealand
Guidewire's ClaimCenter solution is a great fit with EQC's core system needs, but also ensures that we are prepared for a worst case scenario. We need a robust, scalable application we can rely on at our time of greatest challenge—should a large disaster strike New Zealand. Whilst we normally have just a couple of thousand claims per year, we could suddenly face more than 100,000 from a single event. We feel ClaimCenter's scalable architecture will give us the reliability we need as well as the ease-of-use needed to quickly get new adjusters trained and productive.
David Middleton, General Manager, Earthquake Commission of New Zealand, Earthquake Commission of New Zealand

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