Beyond Outsourcing: CGI brings L’UNION CANADIENNE
the best of both worlds
Founded in 1943 by insurance brokers, L’UNION CANADIENNE is present
in more than 450 brokerage agencies in Quebec. Like many insurance companies,
the company made a decision to outsource the hosting and management of
its electronic data processing as well as certain production and technical
support activities. The move allowed L’UNION CANADIENNE to focus
its entire energy on its key sector of activity: providing customers with
high-quality insurance products and financial management services.
The quality of information processing can have a direct effect on an
insurance company’s services. That’s why, early in the 1990s
after an in-depth evaluation, L’UNION CANADIENNE chose CGI for the
project. The business relationship that resulted has since proven highly
beneficial for both companies.
In 1999, L’UNION CANADIENNE awarded CGI a new three-year renewable
mandate involving the hosting and physical operation of its AS-400 systems,
technical support for users and sophisticated printing services.
The Challenge Insurance companies have
long been recognized for their exceptional rigor and highly precise procedures.
During this fourth mandate, CGI and L’UNION CANADIENNE decided to
further hone the effectiveness of communications between their respective
representatives in order to assure total transparency of IT resources.
CGI wanted its client to receive the best of both worlds: all of the
advantages of an internal system combined with the benefits of outsourcing.
In addition, during the project, the insurer’s two AS-400 computers
were to be replaced by two AS-400/720s, the new, more powerful version
of the same system. It was imperative that this transition be as smooth
as possible for users and that processing downtime be kept to an absolute
CGI set out to ensure that L’UNION CANADIENNE reaped the full benefits
of continuous improvement in the printing and desktop publishing activities
of its Document Technology department, which produces and distributes
sophisticated documents generated by computer files of clients. The printing
process is a critical activity for insurers, for the policies, checks
and updates are the only “tangible products” clients receive.
Even the smallest printing error can take on major proportions.
The Strategy CGI already boasted exceptional
expertise in all aspects of the AS-400 technological environment, from
daily operations to operating systems maintenance to the physical components
of the computers and peripheral equipment. CGI’s professionals were
therefore able to focus fully on implementing control and communication
systems of the highest quality to reassure L’UNION CANADIENNE’s
users and IT managers.
When it came time to replace the AS-400 units, CGI assigned its most
qualified project people, who together with the client developed a detailed
End-to-end technological management included:
Equipment: 2 AS-400/720 systems and
Printing/desktop publishing: advanced
CGI interfaces; production in Quebec City using files generated by Montreal
Document Technology Centre
Daily management of systems
Technical support for users
Tape library management
The Results Continuous improvement of
its business relationship with CGI has meant that L’UNION CANADIENNE
can completely depend on the availability of its systems as well as on
service as efficient and personalized as it would be if it was managed
internally – all at a predictable cost. Moreover, the wide range
of expertise available to the company, particularly with respect to advanced
printing capabilities, has allowed it to “visibly” improve production.
“CGI provides us with impeccable service,” stated Jean Vincent,
L’UNION CANADIENNE’s Vice-President, Information Technology.
“We trust the team’s integrity and professionalism completely,
and they are always open to new approaches. They put 100% effort into
the AS-400 replacement project, which was carried out with absolute transparency
and no negative impact. We never cease to be amazed by the people responsible
for the Document Technology printing service. Their concern for flawless
quality control has exceeded all of our expectations.”