Case Study BHSF

BHSF safeguards its business-critical systems with a resilient cloud architecture

  • Industry: Insurance

  • Business: Health & Employee Benefits

  • Focus: Hybrid Cloud & Business Continuity

  • Challenges

    • Mitigate risk by enhancing disaster recovery capabilities • Create a future-proof IT architecture to support growth • Reduce the need to manage physical infrastructure on-site • Make IT spend more predictable by shifting from CAPEX to OPEX

Overview

When assessing IT-related risks, BHSF identified room for improvement in the way it managed its IBM Power infrastructure. By moving its business-critical application servers into the Meridian Power Cloud, the company has enhanced the resilience of its architecture, cutting its recovery point objective (RPO) from 48 hours to a matter of minutes.

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Business Challenge

Founded in 1873 to raise funds for local hospitals, BHSF has grown to become one of the UK’s leading not-for-profit health and wellbeing providers. One of the company’s most successful services is its “health cash plan”, which helps people budget for healthcare costs by making monthly payments into a fund, and then claiming reimbursement whenever a healthcare-related expense arises.
The day-to-day management of the health cash plan involves a complex set of interrelated business processes, from updating policies and policyholder information to sending letters, processing invoices and making bank transfers. For many years, BHSF has managed these processes using a set of business-critical applications that the company develops in-house and runs in an IBM i environment on the IBM Power Systems platform.
Over time, BHSF became concerned about operational risks in the way its Power Systems infrastructure was managed. Its production server was located in a small server room at its Birmingham headquarters, and its data was protected using overnight tape backups. If the server ever suffered a major outage and BHSF had to rebuild the environment, the IT team estimated that it would take up to 48 hours to get back to business as usual.
Richard Evanson, Head of IT at BHSF, adds: “Connectivity was a concern too, because we were totally reliant on our Birmingham site. If that connection went down, people based at other sites or working from home would lose their access to the system.”

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