Information About the Project







Zoho One + Creator - Complex Integrations

Many things can be said about the local insurance industry: it takes a very prominent place in our economy, moves tremendous amounts of money and operates in a brutally competitive environment.


Yet, this industry seems to be sadly under-equipped to scale the important work they do.  Everyday, they suffer the constraints of their technology (or lack thereof): 


  •  Soul-destroying redundant busy-work
  • Error-prone processes
  • Risk of having projects "fall through the cracks" 


These are all realities of working with a disjointed array of tools that do not speak to each other.


It does not mean that the professionals that work in the insurance industry are lazy, or ineffective, or anything of the kind.  They are just working in a system that has grown into what it is today - old habits die hard, and colossal ships take a lot of time and effort to change course, when compared to speedboats or jet-skis. 


There are other old-school industries that are still entrenched in the computer systems of the 90's as well - yes, automobile industry, we’re talking to you - but we’ll save that for another article.


Some tech consultants have capitalized on the massive gap that exists in this market, and have developed some "cookie cut" systems with varying levels of usefulness. These solutions have enjoyed success in the market, but were not transformative enough to truly satiate the thirst for progress of forward-thinking brokerages:


As a growing number of insurance businesses reached the conclusion that the systems available to them felt small and restrictive, they have been reaching out to Cloud Lion more and more.


One of these businesses is AIM Insurance, a family-owned business headquartered in Burlington, Ontario - with three other offices in the province. AIM's President,  Dan Avon and Vice-President,  Jay MacDonald both share a love for motorsport (super-bikes in particular) and wish to work with the speed and precision crucial in the world of racing - and missing from the world of insurance brokerages.  


AIM always had a tech-forward approach. They wanted to be at the top of their game.   As a challenger, they knew that providing good service, and having a team of hard-working professionals was not enough - they needed to secure a technological edge above their competitors.  They knew what they wanted, but could not find anyone who could deliver it... 


They wanted complex integrations, highly customized automations and sophisticated third-party data connections - with the necessary validations and fail-safe mechanisms.  


The technology they were on at the time was better than living in spreadsheets - but ultimately lacked the power and freedom AIM needed to be effective (like trying to compete in a super-bike race in a 12V PowerWheels car).


Tired of seeing your competitors in your windshield? Let's put them in your rearview mirror instead!


They had tried modifying the tools they had by working with external freelancers - in the hope of executing the architecture they envisioned - after over a year of blood, sweat and tears - they reached the conclusion these guys would never get them even close to the finish line.


AIM was also working with another consultancy firm which used a cookie-cutter approach to customizing Zoho CRM.  While this is useful to some extent for certain companies in the Insurance Industry (in the short-term, at least) - they soon became frustrated from the lack of expertise with regards to other Zoho Apps and the limitations this implies. Zoho CRM is great - but you can only go so far in isolation.  After all - Zoho exists to break silos - not create them.


What we did:




We first built a custom integration, allowing their clients to make payments seamlessly via a custom-made algorithm.  This also enabled split-payments and financing via automation. This feature was not available in any BMS (Broker Management System) at the time - which was a major factor why AIM Insurance chose to work with Cloud Lion.


We then fixed their E&O (Errors and Omissions) program - Using Zoho Creator to build a custom-made middleware integrated to  a major platform used in the Insurance industry - allowing AIM to serve 1000+ clients at the same time.


We further augmented the power and value of their overall solutions environment by integrating this custom middleware to their Zoho CRM and their Zoho Books.


We also integrated the middleware platform with the earlier finance integration we built - bringing the seamless payments flexibility to their E&O program as well.


All of this information may feel a bit abstract- and could be heavy to read for someone not in the Canadian Insurance Industry (provided you got this far) - let’s look at a more concrete example of something cool we built for AIM Insurance:  SPEED WAIVER 



What is Speed Waiver:


Imagine this - a bunch of racers, on a hot sunny day - ready to start racing - but nobody can do anything until a truckload of paperwork gets signed… a bit anticlimactic, no?  


This waiver-signing/document-gathering needs to happen every day they go to the track.  


This was unsustainable - enter Cloud Lion’s Speed Waiver:


Speed Waiver is a custom app built on Zoho Creator- it allows racers in Canadian Superbike races to very quickly comply with the required waivers that need to be signed and collected before every race. The insurance requirements for race-tracks demand more than just getting the racers to sign - their pit crews, and all other personnel close enough to the track also need to comply.

All of this is now gathered electronically - document management happens in the cloud - our app takes photos of each participant as well as gathering their signatures, in order to add an extra layer of validation and inviolability. 


What took 30-40 minutes in the past can now be done in moments - with full traceability - while storing everything securely in the corresponding database.


Now that things are being done the modern way - Analytics can come into play, where all the necessary parties can see trends, patterns and reports following the KPIs that this process entails. Truth be told - we did (and continue to do) a whole load of other cool things in Canada’s insurance space, but we do not want to bore the reader to tears.


We will continue to build with/for our customers in the Insurance Industry and look forward to the exciting new steps that are literally redefining what is possible with Zoho.  All it takes is putting together forward thinking people like Dan and Jay, and business technology consultants with strong technical capabilities - like Cloud Lion. 


Once trust is established - the sky's the limit.  



Join us on September 12 and 13 at the Automotive Building (AKA the Beanfield Center), where Cloud Lion will be a Gold Sponsor - stop by Booth G5 and speak with our team, we can talk about Insurance Industry solutions, cars, or whatever else is on your mind.


Cloud Lion will be presenting our Insurance Industry success stories on the Zoholics stage on the first floor at 3:40pm on day 1 - September 12, 2023.



*Update: we are in the process of centralizing all customer and policy data into a single platform, where Insurers, Brokers and Advisors will benefit tremendously from the never-seen-before interconnection that will become possible.  Once the data is centralized, endless automations will be possible in the Zoho-native environment - as well as Analytics and BI.


This will usher in a capacity to scale that is completely new to the Canadian Insurance market - reach out to Cloud Lion now to become part of this revolution, and to start your next race in Pole-Position.