PaperClip: Reinventing Document Management for Insurers

D. Michael Bridges, President Mike, whatever you create, don’t leave anyone behind. From the smallest producer to the largest insurance company, everyone in the food chain should benefit,” said Ron Dolan, former CEO of First Colony, to D. Michael Bridges, President of PaperClip. The year was 1998 when Mike, Ron, and other leaders were sitting like NASA scientists in a conference hall brainstorming on how to simplify document management for everyone in the insurance industry. Little did they know that their meeting would become the infliction point in insurance. Mike laid out his vision in front of everyone: “Let’s build an internet version of FedEx.” Soon in the fall, Mike and his company, PaperClip, changed the way documents were exchanged—which successfully stood the test of time.

Igniting the Spark in Insurance

Even with the electronic revolution raging around the globe, one business staple that hasn’t evolved for 2000 years is the paper document transaction. Paper based communications remain the most used form of information exchange around the world. To ignite the revolution in this 2000 year old business practice, PaperClip needed to merge document management with a mere few years old communication technologies and internet. Along the same lines, PaperClip wanted to transform papers into digital formats to facilitate efficient flow of files and increase productivity.

Keeping all the dos and don’ts in mind, PaperClip introduced the market to its innovative Internet eXpress—an Internet based electronic document package delivery service. Having over hundreds of subscribers across the globe is a testimony that the industry has been embracing electronic document exchange. Internet eXpress has traded over 340 million document pages since 2000 and currently exchanges over 5 million document pages monthly.

PaperClip’s document management solution changed to a subscription model, which was a huge deviation from the monopolistic trend of perpetual license model. “Offering it on an annual subscription basis, all insurance professionals, carriers, broker general agencies, medical vendors and producers could deploy a document management that met their needs and saved hundreds and thousands of dollars in their pockets,” says Mike. “As the platform was cost-effective, everyone—big or small insurance organization—could avail its benefits.” Mike reckons the advice of Ron in his mind, which eventually led him to develop Internet eXpress, a “Killer App” that reduced the cost of data processing by an “order of magnitude” and compressed the cycle-time from “hours to minutes.” “The reduction of cycle-time was a great facilitator for analog data exchange in document management,” says Mike

As the platform was cost-effective, everyone— big or small insurance organization—could avail its benefits

Internet eXpress remains compatible with various file exchanging channels and also appends value added processes while maintaining a simple workflow. Internet eXpress, as an electronic document exchange network, adds the value of auditing exchange between trading partners. “In today’s atmosphere of compliance, electronic document management and exchange solutions provide more control and security than paper based repositories,” adds Mike. With paper being converted to images at rates never before seen and the advent of exchanging these same images at a push of the button, efficiencies became evident and the savings were real.

In 2006, another pivotal point in insurance innovation was to solve the growing problem of secure email usage. PaperClip along with industry leaders designed and deployed eM4 Compliant Email. At the core of the solution was a “many too many” architecture creating a B2B model therefore transparent to the users, no change. In addition a B2C model was also needed to interact with end consumers. eM4 also features compliance with Proof of Delivery, Proof of Readability and soon Proof of Agreement. Remaining true to leave no one behind, customers can deploy on premise, SaaS or Cloud covering the diverse needs of the industry at commodity pricing.

Deployed in 2007, eM4 has secured email for over 400 organizations of all sizes representing 35,000 users interacting with over 90,000 consumers monthly. “eM4 was strategic for PaperClip because of the growing use of document exchange and we knew we could add tremendous value in that user experience touching now email with document management,” says Mike. Recently the Gartner Groups recognized eM4 in their 2016 Market Guide which we are proud of,” added Mike.

Fanning the Flame of Big Data

Comparing the last two decades of insurance activities with today’s, one can see how data has grown in size. To quell the fog around it, IDC—a renowned research and analyst firm—inked the size of data created in 2011 in its report as 1.8 zettabyte, which is enough data to fill 57.5 billion 32GB Apple iPads. That is enough iPads to build a Great iPad Wall of China twice as tall as the original—and it is forecasted to reach 40 zettabyte by 2020. Amid this data revolution, insurance and allied industries are again at crossroads where it has to choose the right direction towards excellence.

Data is coming from every direction and of all types such as audio, video, images and PDFs. The carriers sitting at the center of this motion are diverting this data to their crowd-sourcing partners for the processing part of it. Usually these processes consume a great deal of time due to the absence of technologies that can enable individuals to manage them digitally.
To fill this gap, PaperClip developed Mojo, a Platform as a Service, to bring big data processing, crowd-sourcing, and its digital management to a single platter.

There are three primary uses of Mojo; transcription, translation, and interpretive action on big data. The ability to approach big data with thousands of small special actions simultaneously creates never before seen turnaround times. Processing thousands of forms, freeform pages, hours of audio and video within seconds is where Mojo begins its craft. Whether it is a 20 minute audio or two hour long video, with Mojo, anyone can process them in text format within seconds—with resilient accuracy. “The whole idea of Mojo is to give carriers the opportunity to capture all of the data from sources, allowing them to gain an edge over other, a real game changer,” says Mike. Combining crowd-sourcing with Mojo and their innovative history, PaperClip is providing the least expensive data processing tools, which meets the business needs while keeping compliance in check. “Mojo is a slang for magical, and it is a perfect technology storm created from scratch,” adds Mike. “By building it on the fabric of the cloud, we have enabled carriers, BGAs and medical providers to scale-up, preparing for big data, as the flow of data increases in their pipelines.”

"When sending the SnipIts over to crowd-sourcing, the data fragments have no context therefore compliance is achieved"

SnipIts are the small segments of data, which Mojo creates for their cataloging and reassembling. These SnipIts are stored and locked by cipher keys providing perfect security— if it gets hacked by nefarious means, the data would remain useless. “When sending the SnipIts over to crowdsourcing, the data fragments have no context therefore compliance is achieved while accuracy is enabled with multiple validation options,” says Mike. In the days to come, PaperClip will be seen fusing predictive analytics capabilities in Mojo.

Fostering a Winning Environment

Mike has always believed in fostering a nourishing and motivating culture within the walls of PaperClip. To imbue the right values, Mike relies on his life lessons, which today are the foundation of his leadership. “By education I’m a chemist, by experience a Marine Corps pilot, and by business an entrepreneur,” says Mike with a sense of pride. “Chemistry taught me attention to detail, Marine Corps taught me leadership and courage, and by being an entrepreneur I’m not afraid to fail or try new things.” Applying these lessons in PaperClip has enabled Mike to foster a winning environment among employees, keeping them motivated to face new challenges and take risks in their journeys.

Looking from the IDC’ data forecast, insurance industry is sailing towards a new era, where the challenges are a new and new opportunities will be hidden in the ocean of data. However, it won’t be the first time for PaperClip to face unprecedented obstacles in its pathway. Forging ahead, the company will keep one eye on the resilient technologies and one on the rising trends to craft reliable solutions that could promise insurers a better future.


Hackensack, NJ

D. Michael Bridges, President

A provider of solutions for document management, exchange, and email encryption services for insurance industry