MANILA, Philippines - January 6, 2009 - Insular Life, the first and the largest Filipino life insurance company in the country, has enhanced relations with its customers through Cisco® Unified Communications in two major sites: Makati, a city in the greater metropolitan area of Manila, and Cebu, in central Philippines. A third site, Alabang, where Insular's headquarters are located, will be completed in the first quarter of 2009. With the system in place, customers anywhere in the country will have just one local toll-free number to call and will be able to reach an Insular Life staff member or agent faster in any of the three sites.
The Cisco Unified Communications project, which started two years ago, is being implemented by Trends & Technologies, a Cisco Certified Partner. Trends & Technologies will replace the old private branch access (PBX) system that Insular Life used to rely on. The new system that has been installed has already started to pay for itself through lower communications costs and higher customer satisfaction experienced by the company.
"We were able to integrate voice communications in the three offices with one local numbering system, facilitating interoffice communications while improving cost efficiency. A Cebu-based customer, for example, may be passed on to a servicing assistant in Alabang as if it were a local call," said Tisha Cruz, vice president of Insular Life's Information Services Division. "We want to provide tools to our executives and key personnel to deal with their mobility requirements and at the same time address some company cost issues."
The Cisco Unified Communications system in Makati was completed in April 2007 while the Cebu site went online in October this year. The project is expected to be fully implemented by early 2009 when Insular Life's headquarters in Alabang is connected to the other two sites.
"Insular Life made a smart business decision two years ago to move to unified communications and is already seeing returns on its investment. Unified communications helps enable companies like Insular Life, which operate in widely dispersed geographic locations, to foster greater collaboration within the company and externally with customers and partners. Insular Life has also found that the system is more cost-effective to operate than its previous voice system. Cisco is delighted that our technology has been able to have such a positive impact for an innovative customer like Insular Life," said Christian Hentschel, Cisco's managing director of emerging countries in Asia.
As a sign of its commitment to harnessing the power of information technology, Insular Life has committed a substantial percentage of its capital expenditure budget to IT infrastructure enhancement, including the unified communications project, and is comfortable with its ability to ride out the challenging global economy.
"We are very well diversified and have a solid customer base. We are optimistic that our IT investments will enable us to enhance our service standards and enable us to increase customer satisfaction. With dependable technology partners such as Cisco and Trends & Technologies, we look forward to nothing but exciting times ahead," said Insular Life's Cruz.