The Challenge

The Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRA) was established in 2007. Formerly known as the Department of Insurance, the IRA is a state corporation with a mandate to regulate, supervise and develop the insurance industry in Kenya.

IRA required a new integrated system to automate collection, review and analysis processes. Data was stored in a variety of disparate systems and it was taking too long for supervisors to access the information they needed. The Authority wanted to move towards a more risk-based approach to supervision which required more consistent and reliable data. However, it took a lot of time to validate the information supplied by regulated entities. With so many entities and peaks of extreme workload, the lack of an integrated system was causing data quality issues.

The Authority needed to be able to define and add new data requirements to the system over time, without the need to go back to the vendor for software changes. Also to ease adoption of the new system among regulated entities, IRA wanted an easy to use portal with access to previous returns along with policy documents and guides online.

The Vizor system is a key enabler of our risk-based approach to supervision. We now have the accurate and timely data we need and a platform that is dynamic and can respond quickly to new emerging risks and changes in regulation.

Elias Omondi, Actuarial & Risk Based Projects Officer

The Solution

IRA, Kenya chose Vizor Software to implement an Electronic Reporting System (ERS) with an overall functional scope that included:

  • Financial Data Collection & Analysis
  • On-Site Inspections
  • Document Management

During a four-month internal pilot period, IRA also migrated several years of historical data to the new ERS system. The system automates an array of functionality for IRA supervisory staff, including tracking submissions and reporting on overdue submissions. Also, automatic data analysis is performed on data submitted by the regulated entities with automatic aggregation of returns to produce aggregate market data as summary reports.

The Results

1. Extensive Automation

Prior to the introduction of the Vizor system the Authority needed to hire approximately 10 additional contract staff each year to assist with data collection. This is no longer required as data is now of high quality and validated in a more automated way. Also, it now takes the Authority 45 days to prepare its annual report compared with 6 months prior to the introduction of the Vizor system.

2. Enabling Risk-Based Supervision

The system is used to build a risk profile for a regulated entity

and give that entity a ranking within the industry in terms of risk. Risk-based supervision regimes are very dynamic and the Authority now has a system that can be confidently used to fulfil new requirements.

3. Autonomy

Nominated members of IRA’s dedicated project team successfully completed Vizor Builder Engineer Certification allowing them to manage supervisory metadata. Vizor Builder allows continuous change in line with regulation, international standards and emerging issues. Twice a year the team reviews changes in the market along with new user needs to plan the next wave of system updates.

4. Enhanced Services for Insurance Service Providers

The perception of the authority by regulated entities is now very much improved, with IRA recognised as innovative and forward looking.

Entities are now automatically notified via email when a new scheduled periodic return is available for completion; they can view all previous return submissions as well as view older revisions of returns, policy documents, guides, tutorials and access online help.