Setting the Bar: Key Metrics in Life New Business Report Published by Celent

Unit cost, staffing, and cycle time benchmarks will help carriers evaluate their business strategies.

January 5, 2007 – Most life insurers have a hard enough time generating their own process and cost metrics for new business. But getting that data for a peer group of top carriers is the only way for carriers to assess their competitive position.

�Benchmarking data is essential for carriers that want to remain competitive,� says senior analyst Craig Weber, author of the latest Celent report, Setting the Bar: Key Metrics in Life New Business. �Understanding new business unit costs, staffing trends, and cycle times gives carriers a huge competitive advantage that they can wield against the companies that have similar products and services.�

For example, Weber says that underwriting requirements are a particular area of focus for many carriers, because they typically represent around 40% of new business budgets. But many carriers are not sure how their requirement costs stack up against the competition.

The report is based on a Celent benchmarking exercise that examines data provided by 11 prominent life insurance carriers. Other metrics discussed in the report include budget per insurance application received and per policy issued, staff productivity, average staff costs by position, average new business cycle time, and more.

The 31-page report contains 14 figures and five tables. A table of Contents is available online.


Celent’s service offering falls into two categories, consulting and research, each of which is dedicated to technology in the financial services industry. We help banks, brokerage firms and insurance companies use IT to enter new markets in the shortest possible timeframes. All of our services are geared towards facilitating better informed, faster decision making. For more information visit