How to balance minimizing costs while delivering new products and services to customers is top of mind for every insurance carrier. While there is no question that digital can help balance the scales, there are still real business challenges to overcome. How did one insurance company accelerate their adoption of digital technologies to advance their dual-mandate?
Digital to the rescue
No one would argue that an insurance company’s lifeblood is data. Data is critical for providers to gain deeper insights of customer needs and behaviors as well as aide in mitigating unknown risks.
In early 2015, The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America® (Guardian), one of the largest mutual life insurance companies, embarked on a digital journey to address efficiency of data collection, storage, and availability of customer data enterprise-wide.
Guardian first turned to cloud technologies in search of a platform that was robust, secure and that could integrate HIPAA compliance. Other critical factors were to ensure the platform could maximize: responsiveness, availability, scalability and reliability across all the building and enterprise management blocks. Guardian narrowed its search and adopted Amazon Web Services (AWS) public cloud.
Cloud service provider to the rescue
With all these digital considerations in mind and a need for expertise in the field of cloud technologies, Guardian selected Cognizant to build a well architected, secure, hybrid cloud platform leveraging AWS. The company’s leadership wanted to ensure a zero opportunity for business disruption to any existing operations.
Before implementing AWS, the combined Guardian and Cognizant team assessed the business requirements to implement cloud, transform current processes and tools, as well as secure customer data with PHI/HIPAA/MAR/SSAE16 compliances.
The team initially completed a thorough analysis to assess additional risks, security concerns and compliance needs. Cognizant and Guardian also defined an IT roadmap and architecture that analyzed the integration to other existing components, third party tools, and innovations for future growth . They then mapped how to integrate these requirements to connect to AWS’s cloud platform.
A well-designed AWS architecture plan was a key building block. This enabled delivering the solution quickly at a lower cost. The framework comprised of all the requisite AWS services (IAM, VPC, EC2, Load Balancers, MFA, Route53, Code Deploy, Code Pipeline, Lambda, Cloudwatch, Cloudtrail, Config) and supported high availability and efficient disaster recovery.
What are the results?
Guardian is using a customized, secure AWS platform to accelerate multiple-build deployments. Integration with all on-premise tools has reduced a need for additional tools and reduced learning costs for operational staff.
The Guardian team is well positioned in their digital journey with basic building blocks to collect, store and share data while migrating additional workloads to AWS, and re-use the solution pattern across the enterprise.
Together, Cognizant, AWS architects and engineers, and Guardian are currently working on many other successful migration initiatives to enhance their ability to collect and gain deeper insights of customer data enterprise-wide and develop new products and services in the years to come.