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MPI technology reboot facing more delays after ‘significant challenges’: CEO

A long-delayed technology reboot at Manitoba Public Insurance (MPI) is going to take even longer to roll out.

The Crown corporation’s CEO says the next phase of the $290 million revamp, coined Project Nova, won’t be completed anytime soon.

“Nova is the largest and most complex business transformation in MPI’s history. Unfortunately, there have been significant challenges thus far in our journey,” Satvir Jatana said at the province’s crown corporation standing committee on Tuesday.

Project Nova was created to overhaul the current system and allow customers and brokers the ability to do more with MPI online, while streamlining processes and business areas.

Jatana said MPI’s original timeline for the project was “too aggressive” and in 2022, the corporation was forced to revise it, to allow the team to address risks.

The first phase of the project launched early in 2023, and was aimed at shifting MPI’s special risk extension business line from a paper-based to system-based solution, allowing brokers and MPI staff to deliver faster, more convenient service to truck and commercial insurance customers.

Jatana told the committee a ten-week employee strike and leadership changes worsened delays for the project.

Now, the CEO said the project won’t be ready in time for the 2025-2026 fiscal year.

The project has been rife with drama since it was announced three years ago, with its original $106 million price tag nearly tripling in the time since.

The budget triggered the previous Tory government to order an external review, which found instability, confusion over responsibilities, and a high ratio of managers at the Crown-owned auto insurance provider. 

Still, Jatana stressed the need for the overhaul, noting the longer they wait, the more costly it becomes to maintain the outdated technology.

“Replacing the older system will help MPI mitigate risk, improve information security and allow more flexibility in meeting customers’ needs,” she said.

She said there won’t be more updates to share on the project until the spring.

– With files from CTV’s Taylor Brock and The Canadian Press 

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