BMD0003 Intelligent Business Information Systems
Nationwide Insurance Use of BI to Enhance Customer Service
Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, one of the largest insurance and financial services companies in the United States, with $23 billion in revenues and more than $160 billion in statutory assets. It offers a comprehensive range of products through its family of 100-plus companies with insurance products for auto, motorcycle, boat, life, homeowners, and farms. It also offers financial products and services including annuities, mortgages, mutual funds, pensions, and investment management.
Nationwide strives to achieve greater efficiency in all operations by managing its expenses along with its ability to grow its revenue. It recognises the use of its strategic asset of information combined with analytics to outpace competitors in strategic and operational decision making even in complex and unpredictable environments.
Historically, Nationwide’s business units worked independently and with a lot of autonomy. This led to duplication of efforts, widely dissimilar data processing environments, and extreme data redundancy, resulting in higher expenses. The situation got complicated when the company pursued any mergers and acquisitions.
Nationwide’s legacy reporting system, which catered to the needs of property and casualty business units, took weeks to compile and deliver the needed reports to the agents. Nationwide determined that it needed better access to sales and policy information to reach its sales targets. It chose a singe data warehouse approach and, after careful assessment of the needs of sales management and individual agents, selected a business intelligence platform that would integrated dynamic enterprise dashboard into its reporting systems, making it easy for the agents and associates to view policy information at a glance. The new reporting system, dubbed Revenue Connection, also enabled users to analyse the information with lots of interactive and drill-down-to-detail capabilities at various levels that eliminated the need to generate custom ad hoc reports. Revenue Connection virtually eliminated results for manual policy audits, resulting in huge savings in time and money for the business and technology teams. The reports were produced in 4 to 45 seconds, rather than days or weeks, and productivity in some units improved by 20% to 30%.
Part A Discussion Question
Discuss some of the trade-offs and the challenges of a move to an enterprise-level analytics solution for companies and individual end users who might have grown accustomed to working with their own customised solutions for generating data. Back your discussion with the case of Nationwide and a critical review of relevant literature.
Part B Discussion Question
Discuss the typical architecture of the master data and its components in SAP ERP, and explain its importance in Sales and Distribution (S&D) module. Back your discussion with relevant literature available on SAP ERP.
Task specific guidance:
You are expected to review and address literature on the matter and compare it with the information provided in the case study to form an argument and make a point.
The general architecture/structure of master data in SAP ERP should be mentioned and discussed. The specific architecture/structure of data in Sales and Distribution module in SAP ERP should be highlighted and discussed. The function of master data in S&D module should be explained as well to explain its importance.
The assessment task outlined above has been designed to address specific validated learning outcomes for this module. It is useful to keep in mind that these are the things you need to show in this piece of work. On completion of this module, students will need to demonstrate:
Appraise scholarship and demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the roles and the impact of different types of information systems that support the decision making process within businesses
Demonstrate a critical understanding of relevant theories and techniques of intelligent business information systems to analyse contemporary issues and devise solutions
Critically analyse issues in relation to business information systems and the role of intelligence in these systems
Critically evaluate and demonstrate the role of ERP systems in businesses
These criteria are intended to help you understand how your work will be assessed. They describe different levels of performance of a given criteria.
Criteria are not weighted equally, and the marking process involves academic judgement and interpretation within the marking criteria.
The grades between Pass and Merit should be considered as different levels of performance within the normal bounds of the module.
The higher-level categories allow for students who, in addition to fulfilling the basic requirement, perform at a superior level beyond
the normal boundaries of the module and demonstrate intellectual creativity, originality and innovation.