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RFP: Digitalization/Automation of Back-end Operations for Microinsurance Project

ISSUE DATE: January 5, 2018
SUBMISSION DATE: January 19, 2018

Women’s World Banking seeks a firm specializing in insurance operations digitization with focus on or interest in financial inclusion. The firm shall support the design, development and testing of technology-based solutions to manage the back-end operations of an insurance product that has been in place since 2015 in the MENA region.

About Women’s World Banking
Women’s World Banking is the global leader in women’s financial inclusion. Rooted in our deep understanding of the women’s market, we tackle financial inclusion in three interconnected ways: first, by partnering with financial services providers to develop scalable market-driven solutions; second, through our gender-lens private equity fund; and, finally, because diverse institutions are proven to be stronger, we build institutional capacity through leadership and diversity programs. Through this holistic approach and our global reach of 49 institutions in 32 countries, we accelerate economic opportunity for low-income women and growth for financial service providers in the emerging markets.

The project aims to increase access to financial services for the low-income women in one of our project countries in the MENA region. Women’s World Banking has partnered with a local microfinance institution (MFI) to develop a life and health microinsurance solution for its low-income clientele. The insurance is bundled with the credit products of the MFI. The program has been running successfully for over 2 years now with nearly 200,000 clients and high product usage (reflected through claims frequency and claims ratio). The insurance program is underwritten by a commercial insurance company with a reasonable profit margin. Bulk of the insurance operations (enrolments and claims management) are conducted by the MFI itself with help of an integrated IT system that hosts all client-related data as well as enrolment and claims data when it is produced. However, many process steps are manual per nature and all transactions are still on paper.

To improve the claims turnaround time and efficiencies, Women’s World Banking has worked with an international Consulting Firm to develop a fraud identification tool (hereinafter fraud model, as we would like to call it), an application that uses the principles of predictive modelling and machine learning. The fraud model is now being scaled to help the microinsurance team of the partner MFI in identifying high risk cases much quicker and more accurately compared to manual scrutiny. This tool is currently in the final phase of testing.

The partner MFI aims to focus on growth and expansion in 2018 along with maintaining thought leadership in the market. As the client base increases, it becomes vital for the MFI to transform its insurance operations using technology based tools to achieve efficiencies of scale.

What this means is that the insurance related processes, which were predominantly manual so far, now need to be fully automated in order to improve turnaround times and increase system efficiencies without deploying additional manpower.

A successful project shall

  1. Support the MFI’s future scale-up plans
    1. Support high volumes of enrolments and claims without creating lags/dependencies
  2. Improve end client experience with the insurance program
    1. Reduce claims payment turnaround time (from claims filing to payout) to 48 hours for low value claims and 96 hours for high value claims
    2. Front end solution for money collection either in an e-wallet or with a e-payment provider
  3. Improve operational efficiency (profitability) over time
    1. Remove double entries and manual IT interfaces between the fraud model and the IT system
    2. Not require additional manpower/skills to manage insurance operations
    3. Not reduce MFI’s operational margins

Role and responsibilities of the consultant

  1. Existing workflow
    • Understand the current workflow of the existing insurance operations of the MFI as well as the fraud model
    • Identify elements in the processes which are creating redundancies, risks or inefficiencies
    • Provide detailed recommendations for automation along with the cost-benefit analysis of the alternatives
    • Propose a new workflow and provide a phase-wise development plan of the new workflow
  2. Development and testing
    • Develop and test technology solutions as per the plan, troubleshooting. The technology is envisaged to be app based (though we are open to exploring alternative solutions), hence allow the use of mobile devices with a high level of data security and be interfaced to the existing IT system
    • Integrate the new tools in the workflow after successful completion of the test and user feedback
  3. Integration of the fraud model into a fraud robot
    • Work with Women’s world Banking and the MFI to integrate the fraud model into the new workflow and remove double entries.
    • Co-design and implement a set of logic and fuzzy-logic rules besides the fraud model.
    • As a result of the above two points develop an intelligent fraud robot that will pre-scan claims and suggest payments and investigation to the insurance team of 4.
  4. Training
    • Provide training to the users (e.g. IT and the microinsurance teams of the MFI) on the go and ultimately shape the development of operating manuals
  5. Roadmap and break-even
    • Provide input for future roadmap for scale and updates of the app
    • Work transparently with Women’s World Banking and the MFI


  1. Report (in a word doc or powerpoint format) on the initial analysis of the existing workflow and recommendations for technology solutions
  2. New workflow in detail (to be done jointly with Women’s World Banking)
  3. Implementation plan for development and testing including priorities on user interface
  4. Testing plan and evidence reports of the developed solutions
  5. Platform for technology solution including user interface (devices will be provided by the MFI) and dashboard handling (monitoring of agreed KPI on app users from management)
  6. Operating manuals, if any
  7. Training presentation
  8. Full report on completion of the work, to be signed off by the MFI
  9. Recommendations for roadmap

Duration of Consultancy

  • 15 months

Location of Work

  • One country in the MENA region. Details to be disclosed later. Kindly indicate if you are unwilling/unable to travel to any particular country(ies) in the region.
  • Please mention the location from where the IT development work would be performed.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Given the variety of skills necessary for this assignment, individuals or consultancies with less than three people will be not be considered;
  • Existence of technology platform that can be easily integrated
  • Experience and commitment to be a thought-partner for developing innovative technology tools and thinking through creative solutions to new problems as they arise;
  • Expertise with insurance and/or financial inclusion fields is a must – priority will be given to consultants with experience working with digital micro-insurance or similar schemes;
  • Proven experience and expertise in data analysis, statistics, application design and software programming, ideally also machine-learning;
  • Proven experience developing analytic tools, implementing their use, teaching in organizations and trouble-shooting problems and questions as they arise;
  • Proven experience in using predictive modeling as it relates to preventing insurance or other types of fraud;
  • Deep understanding of issues around women’s financial inclusion and women’s lives more broadly;
  • Proactive project management skills with strong attention to detail;
  • Experience working in tight timelines and rigorous schedule of data collection;
  • Experience working in a multilateral and cross-time-zone team to meet deliverables;
  • Commitment to delivering excellent quality results that can have a meaningful impact;
  • Fluency in English required, working knowledge of Arabic is preferred; and
  • Advanced degree in software development, six sigma, finance, computer science and related fields preferred with over 5 years’ experience in insurance operations, fraud, data analytics

To Apply

Please include in your application:

  • cover letter;
  • resume(s);
  • proposal, including but not limited to the following components:
    • Statement of your organization’s capacity to complete this work and relevant experience;
    • Team structure and organization of work (describe the proposed team and how they will be organized, and include CV(s) of senior staff who will lead the work);
    • Brief overview of the consultant’s proposed approach as outlined above including key issues to explore with the Organization;
    • Timeline to fulfill each deliverable;
  • Detailed fee proposal, including budget narrative; and the following breakdown of costs:
    • Staff time (expertise hours)
    • IT development and testing (separate platform costs and application)
    • Travel costs (broad estimates for international economy flights, number of visits required, number of on-site days and per diem rates)
  • References (at least two) with the following details
    1. Name
    2. Designation
    3. Organization name
    4. Email id
    5. Address/ location
    6. Contact number
    7. Nature of relationship


Applicants may submit their question(s) in writing until Jan 19th, 2018 to tn@womensworldbanking.org.  Please include in the e-mail subject line “Questions: Insurance Digitization”.


This RFP/RFQ does not guarantee or commit Women’s World Banking to proceeding with the above described work. Due to the overwhelming responses not all candidates will be contacted.

Women’s World Banking is an equal opportunity employer for all regardless of race, color, citizenship, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, disability, veteran or reservist status or any other category protected by federal, state or local law.

Due to risk concerns, Women’s World Banking will be unable to contract with any individual who is US citizen or resident without an LLC or LP or similar structure.

Q: When it comes to claim management, what are the product type or the claim type?
A: There are two types of claims – 1) life insurance and 2) hospital cash (health insurance). However, the IT platform should be flexible enough to accommodate changes in the product features going forward.

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