• Estimated cost savings of up to 40%
• Virtual sever production time reduced substantially, using only one-third of the time it used to
• Enable availability, robust security, cloud-like fexibility and scalability for mission-critical system
• Long lead time for installation of legacy server due to lengthy approval process
• Intuitive interface brings forth operational e ciency and upskill MSA internal staff
• Mission-critical system used for insurance design, new contract application and signing and contract management
• Call center support systems including received call record
• Data warehouse (DWH) supporting end user computing (EUC), download system
• Sales support
In preparation to upgrade their mission-critical system and call center system in the next few years, Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Aioi Life Insurance embarked on refreshing their datacenter infrastructure by partnering with Nutanix and incorporating hyperconvergence infrastructure. The decision has paid off in terms of delivering resilience, robustness and scalability for the organisation, not to mention huge cost-savings as well.
We selected Nutanix based on its track record of stable deployment in financial and public organization’s mission-critical systems. A year has gone by since deployment and we have not once experienced any unexpected problems due to the failure of devices or OS at all.– Yasuhisa Nitta, General Manager of The Second Life Insurance Information Systems Dept., MS&AD Systems
Cloud adoption is inevitable in the future, as we are facing di culties in hiring infrastructure and operations personnel. Having a certain on-premise system is key to sustain the technical level of the company and Nutanix is the most suitable for this.” “Cloud adoption is inevitable in the future, as we are facing di culties in hiring infrastructure and operations personnel. Having a certain on-premise system is key to sustain the technical level of the company and Nutanix is the most suitable for this.Tatsuo Kawasaki, Group Manager of MSA Platform Operation Group, The Second Life Insurance Systems Dept., MS&AD Systems
There is no doubt that system operation has become intuitive and simple as now everything can be checked from the Nutanix Prism screen.Keisuke Futagami, Planner of MSA Platform Operation Group, The Second Life Insurance Systems Dept., MS&AD Systems
Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Aioi Life Insurance Co., Ltd. is a key life insurance company of the MS&AD1 Insurance Group. Under the motto of “a life insurance company that supports healthy and secure living,” the company develops and provides various products and services to meet a diverse set of customer needs.
After an internal IT review, MSA insurance made the decision to update the entire platform before its maintenance contract expires in a few years. This upgrade was a great opportunity for the IT team to address key legacy issues related to resource management such as:
• Difficulty in managing effective ROI with high CAPEX investment every 5 - 6 years for approximately 100 hardware and systems refresh for its current physical environment. Resource expansion is also constrained by CPU, memory, and storage compatibility issues.
• 3-tier system would have taken at least several months to set up
• A life-insurance mission-critical system for the management of sensitive personal information required very high confidentiality and availability
Yasuhisa Nitta of MS&AD Systems, the main systems company within the MS&AD Insurance Group and the team responsible for the infrastructure of the company’s life insurance system selected Nutanix Enterprise Cloud. “With Nutanix, it would be possible to level off costs without large one-time expenditures spent on system upgrades every five - six years. In addition, lead time required for deployment can be significantly reduced. Both of these benefits are highly important to the team,” said Nitta.
As MSA had some prior experience with Nutanix for the company’s information system, it was not surprising that the company led to the selection of Nutanix Enterprise Cloud as the platform for mission-critical system.
In preparation for a platform upgrade of mission-critical system and call center system planned between 2020 - 2021, Nutanix will be deployed on 2 clusters of 5 nodes each in the Kanto area for a total 10 nodes, with asynchronous replication using Nutanix NearSync providing redundancy. In addition, there are plans to operate one cluster in a disaster recovery site in the Kansai area as a separate backup environment. Furthermore, a total of 6 nodes are being set aside for test and development environment, bringing the total to 21 nodes in operation.
Scheduled to be run is a mission-critical system essential to insurance operations that provides functions including for sales support, which creates sales illustration, as well as new policies, policy modifications, product information and payment receipt, insurance payouts, actuarial statistics, accounting and agents. The download server of information system will initially have three nodes with two nodes added the following year, and the plan is for the system to be expanded into an integrated platform that also contains other systems for future.
Estimated cost savings of up to 40%
With simplified procedures and faster turnaround times, the company has already successfully reduced overall infrastructure costs by about 40%. This figure takes into account the reduction of datacenter footprint by at least half its original server rack space and cost savings in energy utilities bills.
Virtual sever production time reduced substantially, using only one-third of the time it used to
Nitta recounted his experience visiting several Nutanix user companies to ask for details regarding their system deployment and was pleased to hear extremely positive feedback on stability, flexibility and scalability. “The fact that Nutanix has an established proven track record in the local public organizations and financial institutions helped to fast-track the approval process from our company managers,” Nitta said. And with the Nutanix system being well-designed for simplicity in setup and deployment, the team found that they have been able to reduce production lead time by about one thirds.
Enable availability, robust security, cloud-like flexibility and scalability for mission-critical system
MSA’s mission-critical system requires high availability and robust security as the company handles consumer’s financial information and sensitive information according to Japan’s act on the Protection of Personal Information. “Nutanix’s high stability and cloud-like flexibility and scalability allow us to meet system requirement in on-premise environment,” said Nitta.
The team also valued the flexibility in being able to spin up and deploy new resources quickly for the business. “We successfully deployed a call center system for agents within several months when we linked an on-premise IP phone platform to the cloud and all this was possible thanks to the flexibility of Nutanix,” said Nitta.
With Nutanix’s high performance and agility, MSA is empowered to launch their digitalization project that involves using AI and voice recognition on customer calls to conduct text mining and create FAQs for its call centers.
Tatsuo Kawasaki, Group Manager of the MSA Platform Operation Group in The Second Life Insurance Systems Dept. recalls several times when his team was asked to set up platforms at top speed. “Nutanix has been useful when we must quickly allocate server resources and set up a test environment prior to start of operations,” Kawasaki said.
Intuitive interface brings forth operational efficiency and upskill MSA internal staff
Although staff of MSA is not operating and managing the server system, they are con dent in being self- sufficient with Nutanix. “We are able to use Prism which allows us to confirm if something comes up, so there is no question that operation is that simple for the team,” said Keisuke Futagami, Planner of the MSA Platform Operations Group. “It is a big deal to us that by simply using Prism, we can make a clear judgment as to whether additional nodes are necessary, or whether resources are being appropriately secured,” said Nitta.
“A complex platform means we must rely on people with high-level expertise or external maintenance services to run the operations. But with Nutanix, operation is intuitive and simplified and so everyone can learn the skills required quickly,” said Kawasaki. As the server platform transits to Nutanix, “we hope that this will lead to an improvement in the operational efficiency and productivity,” he added.
For the future, the company is looking at the possibility of integrating other department systems, such as revenue analysis that is currently not running on Nutanix as it does not fall directly under the management of the system department.
Meanwhile, as digitalization accelerates, it is expected that the number of new systems including IoT will increase. “Going forward, we see ourselves adding new system and applications onto the Nutanix platform. We will also be keeping our options open with regards to cloud services, and we are sure that we can leverage Nutanix for a good unified experience,” said Kawasaki2.
1 As a group IT company, MS&AD Systems Co., Ltd.’s MSA Platform Operation Group of the Second Life Insurance Systems Department is in charge of development and operation of Mitsui Sumitomo Aioi Life Insurance Co., Ltd.’s infrastructure.
2Case study developed as of Aug 2019.