ACC looks to replace costly systems again

Last updated 05:00 18/12/2013

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Another massive government information technology project is in the wings.

ACC is considering a sweeping revamp which could see it replace most of its software, including the client management system that it installed just six years ago at a cost of $103 million.

The Crown-owned insurer said it was planning a move to a new business model and a case would be put to its board in April.

Change director Phil Riley said ACC's existing processes were "complex and inefficient", did not have privacy principles embedded in, and the availability of digital services was limited.

ACC said in a "notice of intent" to suppliers that it was reviewing its core business systems, including its client and case management, billing, and policy administration software and expected to issue a tender in January.

A spokeswoman said ACC did not yet know whether its existing Eos claims management system, supplied by Dublin-based Fineos, would then meet its needs.

Riley said that, with the exception of Eos, ACC's software applications were "legacy" applications built in-house between 1997 and 2001 that did "not sufficiently support our strategy to be an organisation that is easier to do business with".

Eos had largely performed to expectations "with some exceptions around stability in recent times" which were mainly because of systems changes and not necessarily the Eos software, Riley said.

But integrating different systems carried risks, which meant ACC had to look at all its capabilities.

That did not necessarily mean it needed to replace all its software, he said.

Riley would not comment on the likely cost of ACC adopting the new operating model, saying disclosing that now, before contracts were awarded, would not be in levy-payers' interests.

When ACC inked the contract to buy Eos in 2005, it said the software could be used to let claimants view the status of their claims and ACC accounts over the web.

However, that feature has not eventuated.

Riley said it would need to upgrade its version of Eos to achieve that.

"Later versions of the Fineos product than the version currently deployed at ACC offer capability to allow claimants access to their case file through a ‘Client Viewpoint'.

"ACC intended to validate this capability against other products available in the marketplace as part of this tender process," he said.

Eos replaced ACC's Pathway system, which itself was only completed in 1997 at a cost of $45m.

ACC's general manager of business transformation at the time, Kevin Walker, had warned in 2006 that Eos might only have a life cycle of five to 10 years.

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- BusinessDay

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