"Turning construction data portability into profits and objectives into reality"
Your objective as an owner is to provide opportunities to the contractors in your community to participate on your construction projects. This will promote more bidders, leading to more price competition and lower prices. You also want to maintain quality control on your projects. Having your bid solicitation and project management systems provide portable data helps to accomplish these objectives. The more you deliver quality underwriting information that is cost effective to administer, the more successful your agency or company will be.
Establishing a surety programPrototype applications:
Collects company information for export to surety agent, surety markets
Your surety programs are established by collecting data from your agent, processing that initial information followed by an ongoing flow of project information. The CHICO process strives to demonstrate a way to develop a procedure to make your clients data “portable”. This will allow the data to be imported and processed by your system in a way that reduces redundant data entry. Your objective to provide the best possible surety program for your clients can be accomplished in part by making your company capable of managing portable data.
There are a number of commercially available surety agency management systems that your agents could use that would manage the portable data as envisioned, and the CHICO Process goal is to generate the demand that justifies their adapting their respective systems for a uniform industry wide method.
CHICO Bid List Connection
Exports data to surety, surety agent and repository
Surety Access Connection
Exports project data to surety and repository
The CHICO process requires the project owner to provide basic project information for contractors on their website in a downloadable file using industry adopted open standards. Whether they are a prime contractor or a subcontractor they can access project information from the owner’s website and forward the project information to your surety agency and ultimately on to your underwriters.
Most contractors use some form of a bid management. These can range from a simple excel spreadsheet to more comprehensive commercial applications. Getting the project data to import into those applications is not difficult, and can be accomplished by mapping the fields, or a simple cut and paste. Those applications can also be made to export the project data by someone with basic knowledge of computers.
If your contractor clients do not have a bid management application that can import/export the project data can sign up for Bid List Connection, a very basic application that not only helps manage them bidding schedule, but acts as a communication tool to pass along (export) the data to their surety agent, and ultimately to your underwriters.
Bid Submission to OwnerPrototype application:
Bid List Connection
There are various examples of electronic surety transactions currently in use and the surety industry is developing the policies and procedures for a nationwide electronic surety transaction structure. No matter what direction this development takes, it will always require the basic project and contractor data in a digital format. The CHICO process demonstrates how that data could be standardized to promote and encourage that development.
Your client’s data, added to the project data they exported to your agent, provides the information your systems need for processing the bond request and will be the foundation for an electronic surety bid bond.
Project awardPrototype applications:
Surety Access Connection
Maintains imported project data from Bid List Connection
When your client is the successful bidder on a project your underwriting system will already have most of the information necessary for issuing the final bond because of the earlier import of the bid information.
Your surety agent will add the additional information required for conversion to a final bond, and for exporting that revised data to your system and/or repository.
Project Risk ManagementPrototype applications:
Project Status Connection
Imports project data from owners system
Exports project data to surety
The CHICO process is more than just moving bid data between your contractor client to your surety agent and then on to your underwriter. It also involves establishing an ongoing link to that data during the progress of the project. Access to ongoing project data will have a significant beneficial impact to the ability your underwriters and claim departments to monitor your portfolio of projects and improve your underwriting results.
When you can manage “portable” data at the outset, your systems can efficiently and cost effectively deliver your agents the best surety program possible for your mutual clients, and your systems can provide better service to your underwriters, agents and contractor clients as well.
Your bonded projects can be monitored using the links originally provided during the bidding process, or in some cases through Project Status Connection. This gives your surety underwriters more flexibility in the underwriting process, allowing them to extend the surety credit your clients deserve.
Some of the main objectives of the CHICO process are to: