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"We are positively surprised by the quality and stability of the product. Understanding how the user works with the host is all that is required to do the integration"

Daniel Llado
General Manager
TietoEnator-Systems Integrators for Swiss Life


MITEM Case Study - Rentenanstalt / Swiss Life

Summary: Founded in 1857, Swiss Life is Switzerland's oldest privately-held life insurance company. With headquarters in Zürich, Swiss Life has over 11,000 employees worldwide. The Company holds the #1 market position in Switzerland and is one of Europe's leading life insurers. Swiss Life has subsidiaries and branches in over 50 countries.

Creating a Customer Centric Service Center

Swiss Life made a commitment to set the industry standard for delivering superior customer service. To achieve this goal Swiss life decided to develop a new customer service call center that would enable any agent who fields customer calls to have all the important policy information they need at their fingertips. A key goal of the new service center was to improve customer relationship management which was previously impaired by complex manual processes and workflow. The new service center would be designed to enable service agents to concentrate on the customer questions and needs, rather than spending call time gathering information from myriad screens and systems.

Taming the Infrastructure

Swiss Life uses a number of different legacy applications running on diverse systems such a Bull mainframe, HP UNIX and an Intel-based DOS system. The Bull mainframe hosts the majority of the key applications.

Initially, the service center project was dependent on the delivery of a BEA Tuxedo middleware infrastructure to integrate the Bull mainframe and other systems. This plan also involved the deployment of a SilverStream application server on which Swiss Life planed to build their mission-critical applications. This infrastructure build was initially estimated to require more than 12 months of development.

Phase 1: The Desktop Call Center Solution

Swiss Life determined that an interim solution would be needed to support customer service during the Tuxedo infrastructure development phase. Working with a leading European systems integrator, Swiss Life chose MitemView to develop a call center solution that integrated several customer-facing applications.

MitemView's non-invasive approach and pre-built adapters enabled a 2-tier, desktop architecture to be delivered in just 4 months.

The Integration Challenge

MitemView's role in the interim call center solution was to integrate 5 different legacy applications: two Bull mainframe applications, a character-based HP/Unix system, and a Windows NT-based application connected via a Telnet server. As each new application was integrated, Swiss Life saw the opportunity to automate more routine business processes. This increased automation resulted in more efficient deployment of human capital.

Results of the MITEM solution

  • Integrated and extended Swiss Life's existing legacy systems
  • Delivered rapid time-to-market solutions for the new application - MITEM's non-invasive integration approach required no changes or additions to the host systems
  • Improved customer satisfaction through more efficient service center processes and workflow
  • Increased business process automation that resulted in greater productivity

Phase 2: From Interim Desktop Solution to Full Infrastructure Solution

The "interim" solution proved to be startling to Swiss Life for several reasons: it was deployed quickly, it was extremely cost effective, and it out-performed the BEA Tuxedo infrastructure solution! For these reasons, MitemView was elevated from a desktop deployment to an infrastructure solution, taking on the integration role seen in the following diagram:

In this architecture, the front-end is a composite Java application running on a SilverStream application server. A combination of MitemView and Tuxedo Services were selected to provide the back-end application integration.

Karin Simon, Head of the Service Center Project for Swiss Life stated, " By utilizing this new standard user interface for all service center employees, we are able to map specific information from ten different systems and process policy adjustments into a single application. In addition, we have integrated modern service functions into the system and, as a result, everyone is a winner: our employees through having a much more convenient system to operate when dealing with customers and our customers through a quicker and more efficient level of service."

Now, all necessary existing systems for private insurance have been integrated into the composite front-end so that policy information from ten different sources can be viewed and processed in a single graphical user interface.

The Systems Integrator

TietoEnator Consulting was Swiss Life's systems integrator for the service center development project. TietoEnator initially selected MitemView because of its solid history of enabling call center solutions that streamline business processes, increase productivity and build customer loyalty.

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