Thomas attended a PLRB Convention in the mid-nineties, in which the keynote speaker talked about the coming "Internet revolution", and his expectation that this new phenomenon would one day change the world, in a more dominant way than had the agricultural and industrial revolutions. Hearing this prognostication about such a little-known and understood concept had a profound impact on Thomas's thinking about the way in which his chosen profession operated.
At the time, people were just beginning to use email, and the Internet as a business tool was hardly commonplace. It would be years before the insurance industry employed any of the common Internet technologies so widely used today, but Thomas knew then that insurance - and claims in particular - were ripe for change. He knew that the paper file of the time would be replaced in the not-too-distant future, and he wanted to drive that change. But how? Well, that answer took some time to figure out.
A few years later, Thomas convinced his then employer to allow him to build a claims management system. Thomas had a high school friend design a prototype using MS Access, and the seed was planted. This technology initiative took flight and the success of the project had a significant impact on his employer's business, and the direction of Thomas's career. He knew then that he wanted to focus on technology and knew he could only do so if he controlled his own business thus, E-Claim was born.
With the freedom to lead his own course, and the wind at his back (the Dot Com Boom was peaking), the company began by securing contracts with several national, state, and local independent adjusting associations. But the boom was short-lived, and the great Internet bust of 2000 put doubt in the minds of many, that this "revolution" was for real. The bust was not a deterrent to E-Claim, which had been funded by actual revenue, unlike nearly every Internet company, which had planned their future around the easy VC money.
E-Claim's early success came from developing websites, operating a successful claims industry resources portal, providing the industry with its first commercial online claim assignment service, and using its own systems as the backend to support its thriving ecommerce businesses. But, the dream of transforming the industry was an expensive and illusive effort. The success of these early offerings allowed E-Claim to fund development of its first Internet based Claims Management System, which launched in 2004, just before the "Big Four" hurricanes. The CMS program's successful operations and tremendously favorable response from our IA firm clients, as well as their field claims adjusters and insurance carriers, confirmed the vision, and began a period of rapid growth for E-Claim and its flagship offering, ClickClaims.
In 2006, E-Claim received additional affirmation of its efforts and vision, when AM Best named the company as recipient of its coveted eFusion Award, for Claims Management. E-Claim was then a tiny company, but competed and won against several finalists, which included large national service providers, as well as insurance carriers from multiple countries. Exposure from this event led to rapid adoption of ClickClaims as the premier online claims management solution, particularly in the area of property claims and more specifically in the niche of catastrophe claims management.
Over the next several years, E-Claim continued to grow its client base, as the world and the insurance industry began to understand "The Power of the Internet" (E-Claim's tagline since 1999), and became comfortable with Software as a Service, a concept that Salesforce brought to the masses several years later (we were "cloud" when cloud was not yet known, much less cool). Offering a "Base" product and a "Custom" solution, ClickClaims was affordable and available to companies of any size and could be quickly adapted to fit nearly any specialty business. ClickClaims has since been customized to serve the needs of insurance restoration providers, auto claim specialists, Take-Out carriers, and specialty brokers, including such niches as marine cargo claims.
ClickClaims is a pioneer in the area of Electronic Data Interchange, having developed an automated "claim importer" in 2005, which has become a cornerstone of our offering and a most-valued service to nearly all of our clients. ClickClaims currently imports claims from over 25 insurance carriers and offers bi-directional EDI with both Symbility and XactAnalysis. In 2012 these automated services allowed our clients to process over 50,000 claims within 3 weeks following Hurricane Sandy.
In 2013 E-Claim launched ClickClaims for insurance companies with a focus on property. This offering includes a bi-directional EDI with Policy Port (Tiva), and the IA version of ClickClaims. This "full-circle" method of exchanging claims data provides our clients with unparalleled efficiency and a significant market advantage. Data is entered only once but is synchronized between all stakeholder systems.
E-Claim's commitment to providing the most advanced technologies is a fundamental part of our corporate vision and will continue to lead our industry through this exciting transformative period. With so many advancements having become commonplace within our industry over the last 10-15 years, one might think the future has been seen. We believe the future will bring even more exciting opportunities for transformational changes, and E-Claim intends to remain on the cusp of those discoveries - think wearable computing, drones, tiny satellites, and "The Internet of Things", to name but a few - stay tuned!!!