Published on 25-Jan-2012
"IBM SPSS Modeler is easily able to manage 50-100 million charts, which would destine traditional data analytical techniques to failure." - Zoltán Hans , Director of Service Development and Online Management, AEGON Hungary
Business-to-Business, Business Analytics
AEGON Hungary General Insurance Company is the successor of the former Hungarian national insurance company and, until 1986, was the country’s sole insurance company. In 1992, AEGON Hungary became a member of the Netherlands-based AEGON Group. The company has a client base of more than two million people, and employs some 1,200 staff. AEGON Hungary is one of the largest players in the Hungarian life and asset insurance markets, as well as in the investment market, and is one of the country’s largest providers of life insurance, income protection and pension products.
As one of the largest insurance companies in Hungary, AEGON manages a vast stock of customer data, which needs to be processed and analysed quickly and intelligently in order to provide the company with better insight into customer behaviour.
AEGON Hungary uses IBM® SPSS® Statistics Base and IBM SPSS Modeler to drive improved analysis of raw customer data. Company product developers use SPSS Statistics Base, while the data mining team also works with SPSS Modeler. The insurer also worked to develop a custom-made extension to SPSS Modeler that provides additional insight for the sales teams.
Enables rapid, efficient analysis of large volumes of data, making it easy to manage 50-100 million charts. Enhances insight into customer behaviour and needs, resulting in increased client revenue, stronger customer loyalty, and reduced cost of sales and canvassing. Generates better quality, more structured data and analyses through the use of extensive procedures and tests.
AEGON Hungary General Insurance Company is the successor of the former Hungarian national insurance company and, until 1986, was the country’s sole insurance company. In 1992, AEGON Hungary became a member of the Netherlands-based AEGON Group. The company has a client base of more than two million people, and employs some 1,200 staff. AEGON Hungary is one of the largest players in the Hungarian life and asset insurance markets, as well as in the investment market, and is one of the country’s largest providers of life insurance, income protection and pension products. The company follows a conservative business policy and strives to ensure that its operations and services are transparent and easily controlled by stakeholders.
The road to SPSS software
As Zoltán Hans, AEGON Hungary’s Director of Service Development and Online Management, explains: “Our journey to IBM SPSS software was a long one. We previously used a diverse combination of applications to run our data analysis, until we moved to IBM’s predictive analytics software in 2001.” By this time, such a huge amount of data had been built up that the company’s existing IT infrastructure was unable to cope with it, meaning that it was only possible to work on sample data.
The company started to use IBM SPSS Statistics Base in 2005 and, in the following year, as part of a pilot scheme, also introduced SPSS Modeler to help calculate customer value. The data mining team was set up near the end of 2006, and has been working with the help of the IBM SPSS products ever since.
Supporting more effective data analysis
Today, AEGON Hungary has a stock of approximately 1.7 to 1.8 million contracts, so there is an enormous amount of historical data that the insurer must analyse and manage. IBM SPSS statistical analysis and modelling software enables the company to turn millions of bytes of raw customer data into valuable insight.
AEGON Hungary uses IBM SPSS software in two areas: product development and data mining. Product developers use SPSS Statistics Base, while the data mining team also works with SPSS Modeler. “We laid down the technical foundations of data mining with SPSS Modeler,” says Zoltán Hans. “At first we just tested it during the pilot project, and based on the experiences we gained, we moved forward.”
Custom-made SPSS solution
Under a research and development project in cooperation with SPSS and the Hungarian Academy of Sciences Institute of Computer Technology and Automation, AEGON Hungary developed an innovative methodology to support cross-selling.
“We examined the issue, and studied foreign best practices to see how they found solutions using IBM SPSS tools,” Zoltán Hans explains. “The result of this development is an independent extension to IBM SPSS Modeler, only accessible to AEGON Hungary. We are very pleased with this new application, which our sales team now uses to support its day-to-day work.”
The typical cases found in the online SPSS database help users to find a solution to their problems as quickly as possible. “If we can’t find the answer online, then IBM SPSS experts are always available for contact by phone. This kind of guidance is a good example of effective cooperation,” says Zoltán Hans. This valuable support and the user-friendliness of the software were key factors in the company’s decision to use SPSS products long term.
Rapid, intelligent insight into customer behaviour
AEGON Hungary processes enormous volumes of customer data, and the IBM SPSS solutions help it to effectively analyse large amounts of raw information and extract valuable insight. “We knew we had a lot of customer contracts, but it was only during application of the SPSS software that we truly realised how much contributory information there was to process as well,” notes Zoltán Hans. “With SPSS Modeler, however, such work is efficient and fast, and the software is easily able to manage 50-100 million charts, which would destine traditional data analytical techniques to failure.”
An important element of an insurance company’s business strategy is the constant development of new products and services, and its ability to sell these to its existing clients. IBM SPSS analytics tools help AEGON Hungary to gain a better understanding of customer behaviour and needs, allowing the company to better tailor its insurance offerings to customer requirements. The outcome of this is an increase in the revenue from each client, stronger customer loyalty, and a reduction in sales and canvassing costs.
In addition to its speed and dynamism, the other major advantage offered by IBM SPSS software is its ability to show information from different perspectives, so that high-quality, well-structured data and analyses can be generated.
“When there is something we cannot do efficiently or quickly with SQL, then we use IBM SPSS Modeler,” explains Zoltán Hans. “For example, when we use it when performing segmentation, preparing decision-trees or age diagrams, or calculating client value.”
Zoltán Hans concludes, “For us, the main advantages of IBM SPSS Statistics Base and SPSS Modeler are that they are easy and intuitive to use, quick to install, and they operate in an easy-to-understand way. I believe that with these IBM SPSS solutions, AEGON Hungary has managed to choose a tool that offers a tailor-made solution at good value for money.”
About IBM Business Analytics
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