Case Study 1:
Modernization of NTUC Income
NTUC Income, one of Singapore’s largest insurers, has over 1.8 million policy holders with total assets of S$21.3 billion. Up until a few years ago, Income’s insurance process was very tedious and paper-based. In all, paper policies comprising 45 million documents were stored in over 16,000 cartons at three warehouses. Whenever a document is needed to be retrieved, it would take about two days to locate and ship it by courier. Refilling would again take about two days. Despite periodic investments to upgrade the HP 3000 mainframe that hosted the core insurance applications as well as the accounting and management information system, it still frequently broke down. When it broke down, work would stop and the staff would choose either data reconciliation or backup, which was costly and time-consuming. At the same time, transaction processing for policy underwriting was still a batch process and information was not available to agents and advisors in real-time, resulting in loss of opportunities for cross-product sales. All this changed in June 2003, when Income switched to the Java based eBao Lifesystem from eBao Technology. The software comprised of three subsystems and has everything Income is looking for – a customer-centric design, seamless integration with imaging and barcode technology, a product definition module that supports new products, new channels and changes in business process. As a part of eBao implementation, Income decided to replace its entire IT infrastructure with a more robust, scalable architecture. In addition, Income also revamped its business continuity and disaster-recovery plans. Moving to a paperless environment, however, was not easy. Despite having to throw away all paper records, scan and store on “trusted” storage device, currently about 500 office staff and 3,400 insurance advisor could access the information and system anytime, anywhere....