The PRWIRE Press Releases https:// 2014-04-01T00:41:00Z Innovative New Software Suite Streamlines Australia's Insurance Underwriting Sector 2014-04-01T00:41:00Z innovative-new-software-suite-streamlines-australia-s-insurance-underwriting-sector Gratex International Australia, a leading developer of software for insurance underwriting agencies, has announced the launch of its next-generation underwriting process management suite - UPM2.   Specifically designed for insurance agencies, UPM2 is a fully integrated business management system that automates workflows and improves efficiency. The software allows firms to focus on performance and business growth rather than underlying administrative processes. "Australian insurance agencies are facing a perfect storm of market forces," said Milan Neklapil, Managing Director, Gratex International Australia. "Growing competition, rising costs and increasing customer expectations mean firms must streamline their operations or risk losing market share." In a recent survey of members of the Underwriting Agencies Council[1], 68 per cent of underwriting agents stated that fierce competition is a key challenge which impacts on their business forcing 47% of agencies to look for ways to protect their business. Of those surveyed, 74 per cent nominated operational systems as being 'very important' or 'critical' to improving business flexibility and scalability. Meanwhile, 66 per cent of respondents also said improved operational efficiency was 'very important' or 'critical' to reducing business costs. "It's clear that insurance agencies are looking for ways to achieve operational efficiency and drive cost reductions from their internal processes to ensure they can respond quickly to changes in market demand while at the same time improving their levels of customer service," said Neklapil. "UPM2 is designed to deliver on both these fronts." Developed in Australia, UPM2 is fully configurable and supports insurance underwriting agencies through every step of the insurance process. Modules cover everything from financial management and audit trails to policy administration, claims management, customer relationship management (CRM) and reporting. Built around the strategy of reducing operational risk through automation and a reduced reliance on key staff,  UPM2 offers users the ability to store everything from scanned documents and faxes to email and voice recordings. The software automates the claims processing function and allows automatic renewals and streamlined quotes. "By removing tedious manual processes, UPM2 gives staff more time to focus on customers," said Neklapil. "Better relationships mean more repeat business which is at the heart of insurance business growth." Neklapil said UPM2 also helps insurance firms to keep a real-time view of operations through a portfolio of reports, dashboards and automated alerts. "Rather than needing to sift through piles of paper, reports can be generated as required, giving a clear view of exactly how a business is tracking and identifying any areas in need of attention." UPM2's modular architecture also allows the software to quickly adapt to new business demands. Rather than waiting many months before a new product can be brought to market, firms can respond to emerging opportunities in just weeks. "We have evolved the new UPM2 suite in close consultation with our insurance agency customers here in Australia and have incorporated their feedback. The result is a product that meets real-world needs in a constantly evolving marketplace.”   Customers have the choice of running the UPM2 suite on premise, in a cloud-based infrastructure or through a hybrid architecture approach.  This flexibility enables firms to choose the installation that best suits their business and regulatory requirements as well as operational versus capital expenditure demands. Neklapil said Gratex differentiates itself from other software providers in the market by focusing on developing long-term customer relationships and providing users with exemplary industry domain knowledge and technical expertise.   “Rather than simply selling a package and walking away, Gratex works with customers to configure and support the software to match their unique circumstances. By working closely with our customers we gain a clear understanding of their requirements and challenges.  We want to be a trusted partner that can help them grow their business over the long term,” added Neklapil. About Gratex International Founded in Europe in 1991, Gratex International is a business systems solution house with offices in Australia, Europe and Korea. With more than 350 specialists globally, the company develops and supports specialised business management software solutions for some of the world’s largest finance and insurance organisations.  Since 1999, Gratex Australia has been a trusted business systems solution provider for the local Insurance Industry, providing software application development, cloud strategies and end-to-end IT services. ends (1) Listening to Your Voice, UAC Members CEO Survey, January 2014