REVIEWER: Tony Catalano, manager of Database Development for Insurance.com.

BACKGROUND: Insurance.com is a Solon, Ohio-based independent insurance agency that launched its services in June 2001 and since has become the nation's largest online auto insurance agency. Customers that visit the Insurance.com Web site are able to compare premium quotes from dozens of insurance companies, find the most affordable rate and purchase the policy online. In one day, Insurance.com currently sees more than 50,000 visitors who request more than 10,000 premium quotes. The incredible growth in policy sales forced the company to rethink its marketing and retention strategy. Insurance.com saw the need to add customer retention to its strategy. This new thinking meant the company would now need to not only identify its customer base from the millions of auto insurance interviews, but also implement real-time customer matching within its auto insurance interview and third-party data feeds. Insurance.com had the additional requirement of enforcing subsecond round-trip times for each customer match call.

PLATFORMS: Microsoft Windows XP.

PROBLEM SOLVED: After an extensive search, Insurance.com identified DataFlux as having the right solution. DataFlux proved to have the most intuitive and easy-to-use interface. This made it possible to deliver Insurance.com's customer-matching project in an extremely short amount of time - less than three months. Furthermore, with the help of DataFlux's customer support, Insurance.com was able to obtain round-trip times, using DataFlux Enterprise Integration Server, that average less than 0.06 seconds per customer-match call. With DataFlux, Insurance.com has not only gained more accurate insight into its customer data, but also improved the quality of that data using USPS CASS verification. Going into the project, the company had an estimated 11 million auto insurance interviews in the data warehouse. Insurance.com used dfPowerStudio to cleanse, identify and deduplicate redundant customer information. The project identified more than 7 million unique customers, providing an accurate customer count for the first time. This effort has provided the foundation for Insurance.com's 360-degree view of its customers, enhanced its marketing and lead management capabilities and increased the efficiency of its sales center.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: DataFlux dfPower Studio and the DataFlux Enterprise Integration Server enabled Insurance.com to complete its customer-matching initiative, eliminate duplicate data, standardize customer address information and implement real-time customer matching. Insurance.com now has the ability to integrate customer information into formal retention and marketing strategies. Insurance.com's real-time customer matching and standardization has enabled it to reconcile multiple names and address records, even when the customer has moved or changed last names.

STRENGTHS: DataFlux is incredibly intuitive and easy to use. Its customer matching is very reliable and efficient, and its customer support is outstanding. These strengths made it possible to deliver Insurance.com's data quality product on an aggressive timeline.

WEAKNESSES: Documentation needs to be maintained better, and there needs to be tighter integration with database stored procedures.

SELECTION CRITERIA: Insurance.com was in search of a data quality and data integration technology that was easy to use and could be deployed rapidly. The company also needed a solution that could help derive a single, accurate view of customer information combined with real-time data monitoring capabilities.

DELIVERABLES: DataFlux technology allowed Insurance.com to generate matching routines to standardize and verify data on 100,000 new customers each month, quickly and systematically reconciling millions of duplicate customer records. This helped the company create more personalized services and marketing campaigns using highly accurate customer information in real time.

VENDOR SUPPORT: Vendor support has been fantastic. DataFlux has consistently gone above and beyond expectations.

DOCUMENTATION: Documentation is pretty good. One can determine what a particular module is capable of; however, there are few documentation examples showing how a particular problem can be solved. The end user must be comfortable with testing various implementation strategies, but the intuitiveness of the application makes this fairly easy.

dfPower Studio
DataFlux
940 NW Cary Pkwy, Suite 201
Cary, NC 27513
(919) 447-3000
www.dataflux.com


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