If insurance carriers follow through with the frenzy to “gogreen” in the coming year, one of the beneficiaries will be thevendors that provide electronic signature solutions to theindustry. “The green movement is ramping up exponentially,” saysKaren Pauli, senior analyst in the insurance area for TowerGroup.“I've been stunned at how quickly it's happening. We identified itas a 2008 business driver, and it is happening fast.”

Pauli recently authored a report on electronic signatures andsecure forms in the insurance industry and believes e-signaturesoffer the perfect complement to insurers looking to rid themselvesof the paper they are using. “As the vendors get more activeevangelizing their message and the demand for getting rid of allthat paper increases, I think in the next 18 months you will see ahuge up-tick in [e-signatures],” she says.

Document management and imaging have made huge strides thisdecade, but Pauli asserts carriers have work to do. “It's still inprocess for so many places,” she says. “But it is a focus area.” Asecure e-signature solution eliminates some of the need forimaging, adds Pauli. “Depending on how critical the document isfrom a legal standpoint, a secure document initiative with arequired electronic signature is the way to make it a defensiblesituation when [insurers] go to court.”

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