ELT-Search and IBS DataFort partnership has become beneficial for both parties. The customer received a reliable partner, and the outsourcer got an invaluable business experience. Details are in an interview with Yuri Turovsky, managing partner of ELT-Search and Vladislav Lantukh, General Director of IBS DataFort.
– Yuri, tell us about the company “ELT-Search”. How did your business develop in the insurance market?
Yuri Turovsky: “ELT-Search” is a Russian software company. Its head office is in St. Petersburg, and the software-development branch is located in Moscow. Some time ago, our company has launched one of the first projects in the former Soviet Union to issue smart cards in the Baltic States. Approximately in 1997-1998 we started working in the insurance automation market – we brought the Unicus system to the Baltic insurance market. Since 2001, we began to offer it in Russia. And in 2003, in the consortium with IBS, we won the first tender for the implementation of this system in Rosgosstrakh.
In 2008, ELT-Search was the first on the market to develop a solution for insurance intermediaries: insurance agents, brokers, car dealers – all those who sell insurance services. The main idea of this system is that the insurance policy is first issued by the insurance company, and then appears in paper form from the agent who passes it to the insured. Thus, all customer data is carefully checked, and then the insurance premium is calculated on their basis. This allows the company to avoid the conclusion of an unprofitable contract.
In 2009, we won a tender for the introduction of our system in the company “Rolf”. After that, it became clear that the possibility of calculating the insurance premium is clearly not enough, the system for insurance intermediaries should be integrated with the systems of different insurance companies. Subsequently, our decision was used by almost all major auto dealers – Independence, Avtospetstsentr, Avilon, Major, Avtomir. At the first stage, all of them installed it on their own servers, but eventually realized that it is much more profitable to outsource this work – that is, to place the solution in an external data center. Today, a number of large auto dealers, for example, Major, have already gone that route.
Today we are working on a new project, designed not for insurance intermediaries, but for insurers. Our solution “The real electronic insurance policy” allows a person to choose the most suitable insurance product from a variety of insurance companies online and buy it as easily as he buys, for example, tickets for an airplane or a train.
Naturally, for such projects we need to ensure stable, reliable and safe operation of the equipment. And since there is no ELT-Search data center, we started looking for a suitable partner
– Why did you choose IBS DataFort?
Yuri Turovsky: I already said that we have had a positive experience of cooperation with IBS. Of course, it is more convenient to work with one of the leaders in the IT market, which, moreover, offers more favorable financial conditions – about 15% cheaper than other companies of comparable level of competence.
In addition, we were confident that the company would be able to provide the required reliability and stability of the system. And we were able to verify this after the launch of the largest of our projects on the site of IBS DataFort – “Unified agent of SAR” on the basis of UnicusWeb. When we went to bed, the system had a certain number of users, and when we woke up, their number increased 40 times. Almost all insurance companies that have a license to sell OSAGO have joined the Unified agent.
As a result, the load on the system has multiplied. However, colleagues from IBS DataFort justified our hopes – thanks to them the system survived. Today, about 5000 insurance policies are sold every day.
– Tell us about this “Unified agent” in more details
Yuri Turovsky: With the sale of OSAGO, the insurance company sends a request to the SAR system and receives from there the BMR – the bonus-malus ratio for each client, with the help of which the individual cost of the policy is calculated. In addition, the law obliges insurance companies to ensure the sale of OSAGO everywhere, across the country. However, in a number of regions, it became impossible to buy it because the “gray” business of auto insurance companies is thriving there. As a result, it is extremely unprofitable for insurance companies to work there. At the time of launching our system, there were 4-5 such regions, and today there are already 16 of them.
Previously, to avoid selling the policy to an unwanted customer, insurers came up with various excuses – the office does not work, there are no forms, the employee fell ill. Now, thanks to our system, they can, with the help of a special algorithm, by entering the number of the PTS, pick up the insurance company
– How was deployment of the solution on the IBS DataFort platform organized?
Vladislav Lantukh: We started working , without having any formal commitments – we calculated the necessary resources and estimated the possible load. Then, already in the process of work, we had to jointly modify the IT landscape several times, depending on how the market situation developed. For example, the real load on the system was significantly higher than expected. In addition, as soon as the service became public, a large number of people wishing to hack into it immediately appeared, which means that we had to take additional measures to ensure its security.
After the solution has started working at full force, a number of insurance companies asked us to help ensure the availability of their services. The fact is that the Central Bank obliged all insurance companies to issue electronic policies within no more than 30 minutes. We have become a backup site for a number of insurers, which, if necessary, can replace the main site for 10-15 minutes and ensure the operation of the online system.
Thus, thanks to cooperation with ELT-Search, we have understood the insurance business not only from the point of view of the infrastructure, but also from the point of the tasks facing it.
– What are the main advantages for you when working with IBS DataFort?
Yuri Turovsky: Business partnership is an absolutely pragmatic thing, which assumes normal interaction and quality service delivery. Maybe we were lucky, but we knocked at IBS DataFort and got good service. In case of a problem, no one says “guys, we have not written it out in the contract, pay us extra, and then we will do it.” We did not hear from the partners the phrase “we do not have time”. We also do not tell our customers that “we do not have time”, as soon as the client turns to technical support, we begin to immediately accompany him. In this there is nothing unique – just good quality work.
– How are you planning to develop your collaboration?
Yuri Turovsky: We are planning a very serious development of collaboration. I think that the sale of licenses and the installation of the system for its own power becomes archaism, the era of service is coming. Therefore, we expect an increase in the number of connections to our system by 2.5-3 times this year.
In addition, the IT market in insurance business is actively developing. I’m quite sure that in a fairly short time, buying an insurance policy on the Internet will be just as natural as a plane ticket. The question is whether our legislation will be ready.
Vladislav Lantukh: I think that the main prospects for our cooperation lie not on the technological level, but at the business level. Thanks to “ELT-Search” we got an opportunity to look at the problems facing insurance companies in a completely different way. What previously seemed unreal and impossible, has become clear. What was redundant – become optimal. Our company operates at the level of IaaS / PaaS, but the experience we received during this project allowed us to take a completely different look at our capabilities due to the willingness of the partner to constantly change and use non-standard approaches.
We are very grateful to ELT-Search for the desire to seek solutions based on business needs, rather than any formal requirements for infrastructure. After all, IT in itself, without understanding business tasks – it’s boring (smiling).