A DIH Helps Agencies Harness the Power of AI to Manage ACORD Data

In today’s highly regulated environment, it’s hard to imagine a time when companies weren’t all working on standardized forms and information systems. But until the 1970s, this is precisely what was happening.  

Insurance policy forms, often unique to each insurer, caused confusion among agents, brokers, and customers alike and even made life difficult for the insurers themselves. A collaborative effort from the industry created the Association for Cooperative Operations Research and Development (ACORD), a non-profit organization which developed and oversaw the ACORD certificate of insurance.  

These documents quickly allow companies of all sizes to prove they have adequate liability protection and that they are financially responsible.  

The intention of the ACORD documents went beyond this though, and they have also helped with faster document processing, more efficient validation, and policy snapshots that are always up to date.  

While the adoption of the ACORD certificates has gone a long way towards consolidating policy documentation, there are 850 variants of these forms including: Business owner's policy; General liability insurance; Professional liability insurance; Commercial auto insurance; Errors and omissions insurance and Workers' compensation insurance, and managing all this data remains a vital part of every organization in the insurance ecosystem.  

Unfortunately, one of the main challenges has been how many agencies have yet to fully digitize their paperwork, shutting them off from valuable customer insights and frustrating their partners.  

Poor Digitization Will Impact Agency Partnerships  

As the insurance industry strives to drive efficiency across the ecosystem through digital transformation, it’s unsurprising that many carriers remain reluctant to work with agencies that still rely on analogue processes. This is especially true when it comes to processing claims forms and ACORD documents.  

Not only do the physical forms require more work, but they open a door for more data errors and omissions. Without properly digitized documents, insurance companies can’t share documents across their digital channels, significantly impinging on the customer experience and frustrating clients.  

The impact of this is felt throughout the information chain with inaccuracies because of the manual processes compromising all systems and often rendering the digitization efforts obsolete – ultimately damaging the agency efficiencies, their customer experience, profitability, and even their MGA and carrier partnerships.  

AI-Driven OCR Offers a Powerful Efficiency Boost

Optical Character Recognition (OCR) has had a huge impact on the insurance industry, helping firms to digitize many processes quickly and easily. OCR has been used to help streamline the claims process and populate customer information into forms, saving time on customer queries. OCR can also help when it comes to providing insights that may otherwise be lost deep within the paper-based records.  

However, while beneficial, traditional OCR can’t always deal with the legacy documentation, forcing insurers to rely on scanning and conversion which is expensive. For companies relying on manually captured ACORD certification, accuracy can also be vastly reduced especially when transferring OCR completed ACORD forms back into their AMS.  

The implications of this are wasted time and effort. It also means agencies will not be able to fully capitalize on all the advantages of their OCR investment and are forced to siphon IT budget to cover the human oversight required to deal with a manual data transfer process.  

OCRs Hit Their Stride with the Help of a DIH

Fortunately, over the last few years there have been significant advances in traditional OCR technology. Today, AI-powered OCR will recognize contextual clues within documents to identify data fields from addresses, names and even sum totals and then use that information to make data-driven decisions.  

There is no doubt that AI has helped traditional OCR systems overcome many of their challenges, ensuring greater accuracy without much manual intervention. They are able to handle huge volumes of data, making them perfect for industries like insurance. But, like all AI, ensuring the right data is available from each system across the entire enterprise, as well as partner networks, requires data to be .

If businesses hope to gain real insight from data, they must first verify, consolidate, and integrate all the necessary data sets. This becomes especially challenging as data grows across multiple partner networks, because businesses have to pull the relevant information from even more systems.


With the help of a Data Integration Hub (DIH), ACORD forms can be properly utilized and automatically mapped into an AMS or a PAS in a matter of seconds.  

The system identifies all the critical information like customer names, address information, NAICS codes, and other necessary details from the ACORD form. It then transforms the data into the correct format, which easy ingestion and mapping of the data to the correct fields.

When used together, OCRs and Synatic’s DIH can save agents an average of 20 minutes per ACORD form. And, by automating this data capturing process, agents can enjoy better efficiencies, allowing them to focus on serving their customers, and building a profitable business that carriers will be happy to partner with.  

If you want to leverage the power of OCR and build strong relationships with your insurance partners, contact Synatic today.

Wesley Borain
July 20, 2023
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