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In this recap of our “RMIS 101: The Beginners Guide to Risk Management Information Systems” webinar, we present some high-level takeaways in a five-minute read. Details covered include identifying the right time to migrate from spreadsheets or a legacy system and what a RMIS can deliver.

For some organizations, the use of spreadsheets or legacy systems for collecting, analyzing, and reporting on risk, insurance, and safety data still makes sense. However, as Origami Risk sales associates Marissa Reilly and Ellen Fordon explained in the RMIS 101 webinar, the move to a Risk Management Information System (RMIS) can offer numerous improvements in terms of the elimination of data silos, time savings (through the automation of various processes), and access to real-time data, to name just a few benefits.

What is a RMIS?

Ellen Fordon kicked off the presentation with an overview of RMIS technology. At the most basic level, a RMIS is an information system developed specifically for consolidating property values, claims, policy, and exposure data. With all of this data in a single system, users are able to use the features available in a RMIS to perform a wide variety of activities. For example: 

  • Viewing all property value and exposure data in one place, along with related policies, claims, incidents, inspections, assets, fleet, certificates, and OSHA reports.
  • Charting insurance programs, modeling prospective programs, and projecting the cash-flow impact of retention options.
  • Calculating an enterprise’s total cost of risk and allocating risk across the organization. 

Fordon also pointed out that a RMIS solution such as Origami Risk also offers expanded functionality for automating workflows, administering claims, tracking certificates, performing investigations and audits, managing employee certifications and trainings, and more.

Why a RMIS?

Among the many reasons why it makes sense to move to a RMIS, explained Fordon, are the limitations of spreadsheets or legacy systems and the costs associated with manual processes. When spreadsheets used to collect and store critical risk and insurance information, there is not a single source of truth. Users can spend an inordinate amount of time tracking down the information needed to perform analysis and generate accurate reports. All-too-often, doing so requires a substantial amount of work — transcribing or rekeying data, for example — that robs a risk management team of valuable time, introduces the potential for errors or omissions, and can impede or negatively impact strategic initiatives. 

When is the right time to move to a RMIS? 

At what points does it make sense for an organization to transition from spreadsheets or a legacy system to a RMIS? While the specific answer to this question will vary from organization to organization, Fordon highlighted a number of factors that indicate it may be time. These include:

  • Spending more time searching for information and ensuring data accuracy than using data to drive decisions. 
  • Spending an inordinate amount time and resources on the management and maintenance of a legacy system or workflows.
  • An inability to collaborate with stakeholders and provide access to real-time data.

As an example, an organization might consider a RMIS if there is a large number of locations, employees, and claims; if there is a lengthy renewal process driven by multi-layered insurance programs or a significant percentage of litigated claims; or if information is difficult to access and work with data due to complicated corporate structure and reliance on disparate systems.

What a RMIS Can Do

Fordon then walked through a list of what, at a high level, a RMIS can help organizations accomplish. 

  • Where there are issues with data spread across multiple spreadsheets or systems, a RMIS can serve as a central repository and single source of truth. 
  • Using RMIS tools such as online portals and mobile apps for capturing data, as well as integration and update tools to gather and standardize data feeds, can help to improve data integrity, and ensure best adherence to best practices.
  • Automating workflows can be used to reduce or eliminate time-consuming administrative tasks and boost productivity.
  • Dashboards and reports are easily accessible and provide a clear view of day-to-day activities and a big-picture view of risk.

According to Fordon, these and other applications of RMIS functionality are by no means a “silver bullet.” However, the use of a cloud-based RMIS such as Origami Risk can contribute to improvements that save both time and money. For specific examples of how organizations have unlocked the potential of RMIS technology, download one of our case studies.

What’s Next? 

For those ready to make the move from spreadsheets or legacy systems, Marissa Reilly then walked through a specific check-list of exercises that can help as you prepare to view and discuss your options. These include: 

  • List the activities that cause you and your team the most headaches. 
  • Identify manual processes and the time it takes to perform them.
  • Build a list of the departments and team members involved.

Reilly pointed out that independent publications such as the RMIS Report can be useful in helping to identify the features and functionality available from vendors. The next step is to begin reaching out to RMIS vendors and requesting personalized demos.

How Origami Risk Can Help 

Built on an integrated cloud-based platform accessible via web and mobile, the Origami Risk RMIS suite can help transform your organization’s approach to collecting, analyzing, and reporting on risk, insurance, and safety data. For more information, visit our website’s Resources page, get in touch or download our RMIS Essentials: 3 Steps to Making the Switch guide.