A global specialty insurer and travel assistance company taps to IPPON for assistance of its own
How a multinational insurance group migrated its software systems to improve the customer experience
While many Allianz customers are acquired at the point of sale in a prompt that pops up near the end of the purchase of airline or concert tickets, a number of customers visit the Allianz website directly to buy insurance products, request assistance, or manage their accounts. Yet in 2014, Allianz’s website was over six years old. It wasn’t easily found by search engines, and navigating it was a clunky experience on a smartphone or tablet.
In early 2014, Allianz hired the enterprise software experts at Ippon USA to begin the process of redesigning the B2C site. Allianz wanted to make it simple for customers to buy products or manage their accounts, in addition to giving Allianz employees the ability to make updates to site content quickly and without a need for a technical skillset.
One of the biggest hurdles to success was that Allianz’s U.S. website was built on an outdated Microsoft .NET software framework, and was not responsive to devices. Allianz Global Assistance’s headquarters in Munich and Paris was running on a company-made Content Management System and mobile-responsive web toolkit. This CMS, called Allianz oneWeb, is based in Enterprise Java, a state-of-the art open source platform that forms the basis of digital products for the Allianz group of companies.
To truly migrate systems and improve the customer experience, the U.S. would need to transition its single-platform .NET framework to the Europeans’ Enterprise Java.
For your technical team, here’s the technical stack behind the Allianz project.
The approach on the project was a hybrid between Ippon’s AGILE method, paired with the Allianz team’s more waterfall way of developing software. “It has worked well for us as we were able to develop requirements but also stay flexible, tweak plans as we go, and work in sprints,” says Caroline Horwitz, director of customer experience at Allianz Global Assistance.
More phases will roll out in coming months as the site is redeveloped and continuously improved through user feedback.
Ippon, based in France with operations in the U.S., is similar in its footprint to Allianz, also based in France with operations around the globe. Horwitz says, “it’s good to know that if we need something in one of our other business units that we have access to Ippon in Europe. It’s been a great partnership with Ippon.”