The ease with which new products can be launched is one of the most common drivers for the purchase of new IT solutions. The cost and time involved in bringing new products to market has been a bugbear for the life and pensions industry and, ergo, the majority of solution vendors would claim ‘speed to market’ as one of the prime benefits that flows from the purchase of their solution.
Whilst making these claims, however, few vendors would have imagined the level of disruption that has been created in the life and pensions market by the extensive pension reform initiated by the Chancellor in the last budget. Nor would they have reckoned with the speed with which those changes would have been brought into force, as regulatory changes in the industry are usually brought in very gradually. Thus over the current tax-year the much vaunted promises of the providers are being put to the test as firms try to come up with product offerings suitable to the new financial services environment that will come into existence on the 6th of April 2015.
Many existing products will no longer be relevant to the market and as customers get used to the new freedoms, their demands will fluctuate markedly. This will mean that companies will need to be highly flexible and responsive to the market in terms of their product and service offerings. The problem for purchasers is that many existing systems are rigidly product based and therefore are best suited to supporting minor variations on an existing product set, rather than responding to major changes in the marketplace.
Here at Exaxe, we have always seen that the key to rapid product development is the ability to see products as collections components, such as funds, benefits, charges, and rules that can be re-used across various products types in order to create new products, hybrid products, and new product versions expeditiously, without resorting to coding. This enables creation and testing of products in an extremely short time frame, allowing the company to be responsive to the market rather than lagging it. Of course, fast product development must be buttressed by an illustration system and an administration system configurable to support any product created.
It is this way of looking at products that facilitates the agile creation of new products. It lies at the heart of Exaxe’s claims to provide truly fast access to market with new products and product variations and it is allowing our customers to face the uncertain future with the confidence that their ability to respond to such a dynamic market is second to none.
At Exaxe, we’re confident that our solutions will measure up to the task. For many other suppliers, this need for responsiveness will require fundamental re-design of their solutions, if they are to truly give life and pension companies the flexibility they require.
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