CASE SUMMARY

Insurance House Group is one of the leading insurance intermediaries in Australia. It has 26 offices in four states and serves more than 33,000 organisations across Australia and South East Asia.

Through a partnership between Hitachi Data Systems, Global Storage and Brocade, Insurance House Group has replaced aging infrastructure with a robust, high-performance storage and compute platform that will deliver long-term gains for the business.

CHALLENGE

Like many Australian industries, the insurance sector is in the middle of a digital transformation. Organisations have become increasingly reliant on new technologies and processes to help streamline workflows and increase productivity. To remain relevant in this environment and to stay competitive with the rest of the market requires a robust yet nimble IT system, with an easy to use user interface, to ensure a business can keep pace with its competitors.

As one of Australia’s fastest growing insurance intermediaries, Insurance House Group serves more than 33,000 organisations throughout Australia and South East Asia, including some of the region’s largest private and most notable publicly listed companies. With its existing IT infrastructure approaching end of life, Insurance House Group was looking for a solution to support its current needs, but that would also cater to the business’s expanding needs over the next five years by providing longevity.

“We needed a new technology platform that would provide the agility and scalability to power our existing organisational footprint, while supporting our continued growth and innovation in product development,” said Wayne Hildebrand, Managing Director, Insurance House Group. “As a dynamic and fast growing business in a sector undergoing significant transformation, it was essential that we put the right infrastructure in place to prepare for effective and sustainable expansion.”

As an acquisitive business, Insurance House Group has been acquiring one company per week, on average, for the past 5 years. The nature of these acquisitions means that Insurance House Group’s IT department is often provided with little to no warning for requests to add new users to the network. With the expectation that this would continue, Insurance House Group decided that they needed to upgrade to a long-term solution that was flexible and could scale rapidly to meet growing and increasingly complicated demands of their clients.

With continuing acquisitions and a shifting focus to innovation and product development, Insurance House Group also needed a platform that would help it achieve an increased level of business agility and efficiency. With all of Insurance House Group’s research and development work is conducted in-house, the business not only needed a solution that would support the day-to-day operations of the business and more than 350 staff, but also the capacity for large scale research and product testing.

SOLUTION

Insurance House Group has a long-term relationship with HDS partner Global Storage, for backup and disaster recovery services. Those services are delivered via Global Storage’s cloud, which is powered by HDS’ Hitachi Unified Storage (HUS) VM solution.

Given its existing partnership with HDS, Global Storage was confident in the reliability of the HUSAVM solution and recommended the technology to Insurance House Group, along with HDS’ Unified Compute Platform, Brocade Switching and VMware licenses.

“Having worked with HDS for many years, we knew that this technology mix was right for Insurance House Group’s business. Both Insurance House Group and HDS are dynamic organisations with a strong focus on innovation. As both are leaders in their respective industries, we were delighted to bring this partnership together,” said David Duncan, Global Storage CEO.

HDS’ 100TB HUS-VM has allowed Insurance House Group to reduce its storage costs by consolidating and simplifying existing infrastructure, while its unified architecture accelerates application performance and supports product design and testing.

In line with Insurance House Group’s acquisition strategy, HDS’ Unified Compute Platform allowed the business to quickly deploy additional servers to take on new businesses and cater for more staff. The agility of this system has improved both the time to market for newly acquired organisations, as well as the cost associated with getting those businesses online.

BENEFITS

With an ongoing managed services contract with Global Storage, Insurance House Group can direct its resources away from monitoring hardware to product innovation, ensuring that it continues to lead the industry. Global Storage takes responsibility for ongoing performance management and maintenance, meaning Insurance House Group’s IT department does not need to monitor the hardware for failures.

“Working with Global Storage and HDS allows us to get on with being an insurance business,” said Wayne Hildebrand, Managing Director, Insurance House Group. “The insurance industry is in the midst of a transformation, with more services being automated and completed online. In many ways, we are no longer just an insurance company. We are also an IT company, as we look for new innovations to drive our offering to clients.”

Greater availability and performance also means that users can be more productive and drive results for the business. Creating a faster, more accessible platform with assured security allows the UCP offering to help improve time to production, automating operations and reduce administrative costs while helping Insurance House Group gain real-time business insights.

The new infrastructure has given Insurance House Group the capacity to expand its web insurance services and develop new solutions for the market, such as its Claim Pro service, which creates significant efficiencies for customers completing online claims. Using this tool, clients can upload photos to their online claim directly from an iPhone [or smartphone], making the process faster and simpler than ever before, and also opening the service to a previously untapped market.

Overall, Insurance House Group has seen significant business growth since the HDS installation through the development of new products and services.

The success of this partnership has led to further discussion about expanding this solution to include HDS’ Archiving and HCP Anywhere solutions.

A LOOK AHEAD

Insurance House Group is preparing for significant growth over the next five years, with many new acquisitions anticipated during this time. This expected growth necessitates nimble responses and flexible IT foundations to guarantee a best in class solution for Insurance House Group clients. The new infrastructure has given Insurance House Group the capacity to develop new solutions for the market, while also ensuring that users can be more productive. As the insurance industry continues to undergo this significant transformation and moves to increased online services for customers, Insurance House Group is able to meet the needs of the market with continued agility while at the same time continuing to expand its offering. The core insurance business will be driven by improved efficiency and a dynamic client offering seeking to provide pre-emptive and all-encompassing solutions that ensure longevity and assurance for the future.

SOLUTION PARTNERS

Insurance House Group – HDS infrastructure integration Success Story

One of Australia’s largest private insurance brokerages, with offices in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and rural Victoria and NSW.


ClientInsurance HouseServicesManaged Cloud, Disaster RecoveryYear2015Websitewww.insurancehouse.com.au