We sat down with Pat Eskew, Origami’s Chief Commercial Officer, to find out his plans for expanding Origami’s partnerships with other technology providers in the insurance ecosystem and, specifically, our plans for working with systems integrators for client implementations.
Many companies find themselves relying on an array of patched together technology programs relying on them to perform business-critical functions such as underwriting, handling claims, etc.
Catching up to new technology and implementing true SaaS takes expertise that most clients do not have the capability or time to complete. This is where systems integrators come in. SIs specialize in making software work together in one ecosystem and help with automation solutions.
Q: Pat, you have been with Origami for just over a year. Tell us a little more about your background and building partnerships with SIs in prior roles.
A: Prior to working at Origami Risk, I spent over 20 years as an SI and a sales and marketing leader for both Deloitte and IBM. I am, by background, an industrial engineer and a process-oriented person. I spent most of my career thinking about how to make processes better through technology and insights. That often involved integrating technology from other partners.
Among my experiences was leading our partnerships in IBM with SAP, Workday, the Microsoft Dynamics platform, Oracle, and several others. I have seen the power and benefits, but also the challenges of being part of a broader partnership or ecosystem.
Through those experiences, I learned that the impetus of any good partnership is that all partners must be winners in a solution.
Q: What is Origami’s strategy when it comes to seeking partnerships with SIs? Is the approach to work with many SIs, or focus on a few key strategic partnerships?
A: It is more the latter. Frankly, the strategy starts with our values, which are critically important.
The first is dedication to our clients and the prioritization of their trust and success. The second is that we are always working to innovate with an entrepreneurial spirit. And the third, is that we collaborate and win as a team. Those values absolutely apply to our strategy and our intent with partners, in all three dimensions.
Our clients have bigger and broader needs in order to be successful. In many cases, these needs are more than Origami can solve for on our own.
SIs enhance the industry insights, functional expertise, and integration into the broader set of solutions, that our clients expect. They help to extend our capacity, speed our implementation, and enrich the skills that we have in house to help our clients be successful in their journeys.
As we look at potential systems integration partners, we are being selective. First and foremost, we want to make sure that, as we build our partnership ecosystem, we focus on the quality of the outcomes and the enablement required to get these partners to scale.
Q: Which SIs does Origami currently work with?
A: It is not our intent to go wide early, but to go very deep, with a select set of partners. To that extent, we have three primary partners that we’ve been working with from a systems integration perspective. Namely, Deloitte, EY, and RCG Global Solutions, which is an industry-oriented SI.
We've seen tremendous growth with them the last year. The number of clients we are serving together has been very significant. The feedback we've gotten, not only from our clients, but from our SIs about the power of the Origami solution, has encouraged us that we're on the right track.
Eventually, we will expand beyond these three. But again, our goal is high- quality integrations and learning what it takes to be successful.
Q: Origami consistently has a high customer satisfaction rating from its clients. How does the involvement of an SI in the implementation of Origami’s SaaS solutions impact service quality?
A: Our clients are our priority. We believe that SIs will enhance our ability to maintain our clients' trust and success. That is all about the quality of solutions that we deliver. It's also about the completeness of the solutions that we deliver.
We have been thoughtful about maintaining very clear expectations and governance with our clients and we believe it will enhance quality, success, and trust.
Q: What are some of the add-on services SIs can deliver that Origami doesn’t traditionally provide?
A: In the insurance space, we're particularly excited to partner with SIs because they have a far broader set of solutions and capabilities that carriers and MGAs are looking to incorporate.
That could be change management, testing, or QA. It could also be related to advisory skills around more comprehensive solutions. For example, clients are often pairing Origami with other systems of insight, engagement, and record.
With their extensive global networks and depth of experience working with many types of insurers, our SI partners — particularly Deloitte and EY — bring additional capacity, insight, market reach, and more, that enhance what we provide our clients.
We think we're a part — a key part, as a system of record — of a solution that our clients are looking for, but we recognize there are far more parts of that solution. SIs can really be great catalysts, for both us and our clients, to pull those solutions together.
Q: What do SIs get out of the relationship? Why do they find Origami to be an attractive partner?
A: The carrier and MGA market is particularly ripe for disruption. For example, many of our competitors’ solutions for policy, billing, and claims administration are built on dated technology. They're really not true multi-tenant SaaS platforms, or they’ve been patched together through a series of acquisitions. As a result, they require very extensive integration and implementation programs.
The market is looking for alternatives. That's one reason why partners are generally looking for low code alternatives which are truly SaaS native and can be easily integrated with other solutions. This is where the SIs increasingly see their value being added, as a true orchestrator of ecosystems.
Origami’s solution can solve the issue the SIs are looking to solve on behalf of their clients — to have a system of record that is part of a broader ecosystem; one that is fast and flexible, in terms of the time it takes to implement.