Three Ways Microservices Will Modernize Insurance Systems

Insurance producers and consumers have rapidly started to expect their insurance tools to function in ways similar to their consumer applications. Consumer mobile apps are quick and intuitive with seamless updates and minimal hassle. When business apps fail to respond, frustrated users fail to adopt the technology. It’s now time to modernize your systems environments to function optimally in the cloud and on mobile devices.

Insurance carriers often deal with legacy data and tangled architecture developed from a series of stop-gap measures. The results are clumsy, ineffective applications which lead to a profound lack of user engagement. How do you solve these problems?

The short answer is to modernize your systems environments. The better answer is to modernize your systems environments with microservices that offer a quick to market strategy, reduced costs, and dramatically lower risk.

Microservices, what is this?

Microservices break down monolithic software systems into smaller, independent pieces. The pieces work in conjunction with one another through one or more APIs. The end result is a powerful system composed of smaller, scalable, flexible parts. Updates are easier and faster, while data is managed more efficiently while the end-user experience is less frustrating with the application. You can choose to modernize your entire system at once, or make incremental changes to only the essential segments.

Insurance Micorservices

 

Here are three ways microservices will modernize your systems:

1) Speed and Efficient Updates. Apps have a range of back-end services, from providing directions, to sharing content and messaging services. When these services are parsed into microservices developers are able to update one service without compromising others. This leads to quick and efficient updates. The end-user continuously uses other elements of the application, which amplifies the user experience.

Additionally, developers working on each microservice accomplish their jobs in small teams. Each team can function independently without having to meet or align their solutions with other developers. This promotes rapid deployment of services and conforms with agile development strategies.

2) Scalable Databases. Tech writer, Salil Deshpande summed up the problem of scalable databases for TechCrunch, writing:

This challenge [of database scalability] is in part due to not only the technical complexity, but also the very nature of databases themselves — the need for data consistency and preservation of ACID properties (atomicity, consistency, isolation and durability) even as data is replicated across multiple servers, possibly in different data centers. So databases, especially relational databases, have remained the Achilles’ heels of web-scale technology stacks. The database affects the application — and the application is the customer’s experience of your online services.

By separating elements of the database into microservices, many of these issues are resolved. Also, systems with large amounts of data, legacy and otherwise, benefit from microservices development and design. By prioritizing containers and streamlining data pathways, databases are not only scalable but more efficient.

3) API Gateways. How do all of these microservice end-points connect and communicate? After all, they are still part of a much larger system. Instituting a language-agnostic API that communicates with fine-grained endpoints is standard protocol in microservice architecture.

Typically users never directly access microservices. Rather, they access an API entry point, or gateway. The platform then funnels the user to their requested endpoint. APIs help alleviate tangled code and limit glitches for the end-user. When it comes to modernizing your systems environments, APIs integrate older segments and new segments.

Although microservice architecture bears similarity to Service Oriented Architecture, there are differences in structure. And one is not necessarily always better than the other, which is why the best insurance vendors and carriers support both.

Faisel Memon of NGINX explains that, “application developers rarely follow a single paradigm strictly, but instead choose the parts of various approaches that best suit their needs as they create a particular application.”

For more information on how FAST is helping carriers modernize their policy administration strategy by using microservices please contact us at www.fasttechnology.com or 732-225-0008.

 

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