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American Access Casualty Company

We like Big Data and we cannot lie.

Data / Technology / Direct Mail

the obstacle

Thanks to the freedoms afforded by the 10th amendment, states are free to govern themselves. And regulations abound from state-to-state dictating how insurance agencies must communicate with their insured customers—both online and by mail. As you can imagine, communicating in this environment can become a daunting task. Especially with millions of customers.

With day-to-day operations in states across the midwest, American Access Casualty Company had that exact problem. A problem made worse by the fact that their traditional partners couldn’t quite solve it in a scalable way. Thankfully, we are in no way traditional.

the opportunity

Building a data-driven solution for American Access’ communications is the sort of project we live for. In our eyes, the output (physically mailed offers and notices) was the easy part—a “known known” so to speak. But getting to the output—the data-driven workflow—that was more of a “known unknown.” While we mostly knew what to expect from their data at the outset, we also knew that as time went on the project would increase in complexity to an unknown degree.

That foreseen yet unknown element of the project is exactly why our Software Engineering team spearheaded the project. Engineers are great stewards of the unknown: gathering requirements to fill in any gaps, pondering all aspects of possibility, and narrowing the cone of uncertainty until as much of everything is known about the project as can possibly be known. In the same vein, engineers are notorious for their Agile methodologies and can adapt quickly to meet changing expectations along the way.

Ultimately, our team built a system that delivers tens of thousands of mailed items per day. More importantly, however, it can scale upwards as American Access grows. We worked in conjunction with their IT department to develop the metrics, alerts, and escalation paths to ensure the system’s operability. And—more benefits of having our Software Engineering team lead the project—when we inevitably ran into the limitations of off-the-shelf software, we simply wrote our own.

the optimism

In a world where the Big Data wave has crested, you must focus on unlocking the true potential of your organization’s data. You can continue building all the data warehouses and business intelligence dashboards you want, but if your investment stops at the harvesting or insight stage, you’re not capitalizing on it. Put simply, knowing more about your customers should ultimately provide them a more productive experience with your brand.