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Leading German insurer HUK-COBURG assures GDPR compliance and customer satisfaction with BMC AMI tools


improvement in data delivery time through cloning


more productivity across 400 app developers


recovery time objective (RTO) met and exceeded

Company Overview

HUK-COBURG is one of the 10 largest insurance groups in Germany. It’s the country’s biggest private household insurer with now over 13 million customers, and the largest car insurer with nearly 14 million vehicles covered. Traditionally seen as an affordable provider, a separate arm, HUK24, is also the leading German online insurer. Annual premium income stands at €8.5 billion, with nearly 700 offices and more than 10,000 staff.

The Challenge

Proximity to the customer is a prime commitment of the insurer, so flexible sales channels are available all the time, as are 24-hour emergency call services and legal assistance. Such high wire guarantees place significant burdens on the company’s computing infrastructure.

A pressing need was the generation of new revenue streams by enabling customer-facing app innovation. Although commercially confidential, that would mean opening the company’s test environment to cloned copies of full production data for development purposes. Other key drivers were accounting for new EU GDPR regulations and the software development team’s consequent growth.

At the core of the company’s computing infrastructure are two IBM® z16 mainframes operating in Sysplex mode with four LPARs (logical partitions) and five IBM® Db2® instances (with one reserved for testing and application development).

Almost 58 million IBM® CICS® transactions happen at the insurer daily. Enabling simultaneous online apps, CICS manages resource sharing, data integrity, and prioritization of execution. Seven billion SQL requests run in the same period, while total system data amounts to 290 TB, including the test environment. Two redundant coupling channels keep the entire system operating as a single entity.

The Solution

Previously, cloning had used software that took weeks to deliver production data to test systems, which impacted productivity for the company’s 400 application developers. Moreover, CPU overloading slowed the system and impaired the customer experience.

Eva Bartulej, Database Administrator, says: “Moving to an even more dynamic development and test environment meant we had to be able to clone production data more often and at higher speed. We set up a proof-of-concept for potential providers’ products.”

BMC AMI Recovery for Db2® was the top of the list for the insurer. By automatically managing data resilience, the solution ensures information is fully recoverable, so the business is always on, and customer experience is unaffected. Assuring achievement of recovery time objectives, BMC AMI Recovery for Db2® also reverses potentially damaging changes to operational data and ensures compliance with GDPR requirements for recovery timeliness.

Ronny Schneider, Head of Db2 Databases, picks up the story, “BMC AMI Recovery was perfect for our needs. Furthermore, we have used BMC Change Manager software for more years than any other German firm, so we have unequaled experience of the market-leading service and support BMC offers."

Over 20 years of engagement, the quality of service provided by BMC consultancy has been beyond reproach. For complex scenarios, close collaboration between the HUK-COBURG and BMC teams yields expedient outcomes, delivering continuous, unparalleled service to HUK-COBURG’s internal and external customers.

The Results

HUK-COBURG clones its production data to meet the needs of internal customers to help them, in turn, deliver fitting and more fulfilling services to external customers. The process that formerly took two weeks is now accomplished faultlessly in just 13 hours, with a 10 percent productivity improvement for the company’s app developers. As part of the process, a recovery time objective (RTO) of 48 hours is routinely met and exceeded.

Eva Bartulej, Database Administrator, says, “To stay competitive, our branch offices face efficiency and other market pressures driving our evolution to an Autonomous Digital Enterprise. With external customer satisfaction surveys riding high, our role at the core of the company’s infrastructure contributes significantly to that achievement.”

HUK-COBURG now clones every application to two different test systems daily, and the database team is responsible for keeping those systems up-to-date weekly.

Ronny Schneider, Head of Db2 Databases, summarizes, “With BMC AMI Recovery for Db2, we can clone our data in hours rather than weeks and have no problems with data consistency afterwards. So, we develop our software with greater accuracy and entirely problem-free, on more agile systems. Our internal customers receive well-tested applications with the assurance of logical background process descriptions.”

“BMC AMI Recovery was perfect for our needs. Furthermore, we have used BMC Change Manager software for more years than any other German firm, so we have unequaled experience of the market-leading service and support BMC offers."

— Ronny Schneider, Head of Db2 Databases, HUK-COBURG

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