A Fortune 500 insurance company with a storied past had been picking the low hanging fruit off the application modernization tree, but was left with a few complicated problems that prevented it from completing the transition. PSC was selected to solve the technical challenges and help them cross the finish line.
More than eighty years of organic growth and acquisitions had created a decentralized company without standard processes. Technology advancements in the 90s had put them on a Lotus Notes path to solve this problem, but without a coherent strategy for standardization, the divisions used the new technology to continue heading their separate ways.
The company had four divisions and a corporate entity all using their data and associated tools differently ensuring that apples-to-apples comparisons were difficult. The divisions operated separately and possessed their own executive teams, including independently operating CIOs. Each CIO served the members of his or her division and was reticent to make disruptive changes in the name of overarching standardization.
The client, corporate IT, was looking for a “lift and shift” solution which simply redelivered old functionality, but the Lotus Notes applications were out of step with business units and required modification. Things were further complicated by a lack of institutional memory. No one currently on staff knew how the applications worked, from where the data was drawn, or why they had been designed the way they had in the first place.
Furthermore, the client had long ago started migrating to Microsoft SharePoint, but a few dozen tricky Lotus Notes applications forced the continuation of pricy IBM licenses.
Further complicating matters, the autonomous divisions were pursuing independent solutions to overcome their document management and reporting problems. Corporate IT was finding it increasingly difficult to manage these inconsistencies.
PSC worked with the IT staff and business units to whittle down the list of complicated applications to nine required to maintain continuity. The PSC team was then able to tackle the remaining applications with intellect, strategy, and an ear to the user. In the end, PSC’s efforts allowed the client to turn-off Lotus Notes once and for all and saved the company nearly $100,000 each year.
This was possible because PSC developers cracked open the applications, tracked down the source of the data, and reverse engineered the business logic. The PSC team also listened to end users who shared changes they required. In the end, the applications were intelligently updated with the customer’s voice in mind.
Concurrently, PSC was engaged by one of the client’s divisions on another project. Working with the CIO and giving a voice to the user, PSC created a document management solution that solved many of the problems outlined above. It also turned out to be compatible across divisions. Corporate IT, already impressed with PSC’s previous work, enthusiastically recommended the system be adopted company-wide.