Digital solutions are revolutionizing the claims process. Claims professionals can now leverage tools to automate workflows, track time and expenses, send digital payments, and more. There’s just one catch: each function requires a different program. If you want a seamless experience, you need all of these programs to play together. This is why APIs have become a critical part of the claims management process.
What Are APIs?
API stands for application programming interface. According to Investopedia, an API is a set of programming codes that query data, parse responses, and send instructions between software platforms. If you want different pieces of software to communicate and work together, you need an API.
TechTarget says there are four distinct types of APIs:
- Public APIs are open and available. These APIs are also called open APIs or external APIs. They typically involve moderate authentication or authorization. Any outside developer or business can access these APIs.
- Partner APIs are only available to authorized developers or businesses, who have clear rights and licenses. These APIs typically have stronger authentication, authorization, and security mechanisms.
- Internal APIs are used within an enterprise. They connect the various systems and data within the organization, such as payroll and HR systems.
- Composite APIs combine two or more APIs to create a sequence of operations.
APIs Are Fueling Tech Leaps
McKinsey says APIs were “the secret ingredient for one company’s massive tech leap.” In this case, a banking group needed to meet rising demand for innovative digital products and services in a highly-competitive market. It had ideas, but it didn’t have the IT framework needed to achieve those ideas. The banking group needed to transform its IT infrastructure fast. It succeeded in doing so through the use of APIs.
Although this example comes from the banking industry, all the key elements should sound familiar to anyone in the insurance industry: you have outdated legacy systems, growing demand for new digital solutions, and fierce competition. With APIs, companies can fast-track their digital transformation.
Digital Transformation Takes a Village
Insurance ecosystems are driving digital transformation and helping small companies hold their own against larger companies.
Technology can simplify user experiences, but the programs that make this possible are increasingly complex. Most companies – especially small to midsize businesses – cannot do everything in house. Adjusting firms, small carriers, and new insurtechs need to partner with other businesses to deliver modern experiences. This simple reality has given rise to ecosystems in the insurance industry.
APIs make these ecosystems possible.
According to Deloitte, the 2020 global crisis showed why organizations need to be nimble and ready for whatever the future brings. Companies need to collaborate and innovate to survive – API-led infrastructure makes this level of agility and collaboration possible. Companies that leverage APIs can see improved productivity, innovation, and self-service.
APIs vs Building Everything from Scratch
Your company needs to provide a modern experience, but you don’t need to reinvent the wheel. APIs:
- Save time. McKinsey says the right API ecosystem can allow businesses to build and refine applications in days instead of months.
- Save money. Time is money. You’ll have to pay developers for months of work if you develop a new program. By speeding up the process, APIs deliver cost savings.
- Reduce bugs. Bugs are always a risk when creating a new program. With APIs, many of the issues have already been worked out.
- Help you seize opportunities. When you see an opportunity, you need to act fast to leverage it – before your competition beats you to the punch. APIs make that possible. APIs can also help you achieve ideas that might otherwise be out of reach, given your company’s resources.
The APIs Your Company Needs
With the right APIs, your company can improve workflows, increase productivity, and achieve growth. APIs can also boost customer satisfaction and policyholder retention by improving the customer experience and facilitating proactive communication.
For claims management, APIs that allow integrations with the following services can be indispensable:
- Digital payments
- Amazon S3
- Policy applications
Are You Ready for a Tech Leap?
Technology is moving rapidly; so are consumer expectations. You can’t afford to move at a snail’s pace. With APIs, your claims management process can leap forward. VCA Software offers all the integrations listed above. Our API also enables customers to integrate with their own systems. See what’s possible.