Build America Mutual Improves Digital Workflow with Alfresco
When Build America Mutual Assurance Company (BAM) was formed in late 2012 by
a group of industry experts, the company had the unique opportunity to handpick its
digital business platform and build it from the ground-up.
“BAM is a relatively new company, but its founders have a lot of industry
experience,” said Bobbie DeLuca, BAM’s head of information management and
public finance operations. “We had the luxury of choosing a platform that met many
of our needs out of the box, without having to worry about migrating data from a
legacy system. We had the ability to start with a clean slate, forearmed with the
knowledge of what had and hadn’t worked in the past.”
When evaluating solutions, the company wanted a system to share, store and
manage content that was intuitive for employees to use and one which would also
allow them to improve overall workflow processes. They also needed a solution that
could seamlessly integrate with BAMBOB, BAM’s internal deal tracking software.
It was also critical that the platform could be hosted on Amazon Web Services,
which BAM uses for all its cloud needs, be easy to maintain and administrate with
limited IT resources, and provide a mobile app.
After evaluating several solutions, BAM chose Alfresco One as its digital business
platform because of its open and modern architecture, ease of use, ability to assign
metadata automatically, and its flexibility to grow alongside the company.
“In every category, Alfresco was the best fit for us,” said DeLuca. “It met our needs
out of the box, provided us with the ability to integrate with BAMBOB and allowed
us to go completely cloud-based.”
BAM partnered with Micro Strategies, Inc. (MSI) to implement the Alfresco platform,
which was successfully rolled-out in just four months. “MSI was instrumental in
helping us to develop the platform in a way that maximizes the benefits that Alfresco
has to offer without requiring BAM to change its processes to fit the platform. MSI
plays a key role in our continued development of Alfresco,” said DeLuca. In addition
to content management, Alfresco also provides BAM with the ability to automatically
assign metadata, as well as generate workflows for approval processes. Today,
when a new transaction or deal is entered into BAMBOB, a site is automatically
created with the appropriate folder structure and security access in Alfresco.
“The automated site creation provides a central location to share documents from
the moment a deal gets started,” said DeLuca. “Security for the sites is set
automatically based on those who are assigned to the deal in BAMBOB and through
the use of Alfresco groups. This enables all those who are involved in the deal to hit
the ground running. It has also enabled us to pull metadata that we need for search
purposes out of BAMBOB and apply it directly to the content stored in Alfresco.”
With competitive bidding, insurers must prepare and provide bids quickly. With Alfresco,
underwriters can save submissions into a daily submissions folder, and a workflow is
created for everyone on the credit committee to vote on that particular transaction to
move forward with the deal.
Version control has also improved. Changes to documents are tracked and the steps
taken on a deal can be easily audited.
“We have created the workflow so that notifications go out when a submission is made.
Committee members can easily see what deals are to be reviewed for the day,” said
DeLuca. “Alfresco has really improved our credit approval voting process. It has made it
much easier for committee members to review and vote on daily submissions. It has also
provided the ability to capture their comments.”
Today, with Alfresco, BAM employees can find the information they need
when they need it. All 80+ BAM employees use Alfresco to store over
150,000 documents companywide.
In addition to document storage and management, BAM also uses Alfresco
as a repository for company guidelines and templates, as well as a way to
share documents with third parties and to back-up critical information.
“With Alfresco, we can provide third parties access through the cloud while
maintaining security and not having to save things in multiple places,” said
DeLuca. “It’s also a big part of our business continuity plan. We have
identified key documents and automatically sync those to the cloud so that if
our instance goes down unexpectedly, for instance, we can quickly retrieve
those documents from the Alfresco cloud.”
The company also uses the Alfresco Mobile App as a core part of its business.
In fact, many of the company’s executives prefer to access the platform through
the mobile app, DeLuca said.
“We wanted something that was completely functional without having to go through a
browser so that users who didn’t create documents could have easy access to everything
they need,” said DeLuca. “It has worked very well for us.”
BAM plans to further customize its workflows through Alfresco this year, extending the
automation so that questions on deals, in addition to the comments, can be captured
directly through the platform and used for future reference and as a training tool. Currently,
this discussion is shared via e-mail and saved in Alfresco.
“Overall, Alfresco is easy to use. We saw right away that employees could collaborate on
content both internally and externally with little effort, said DeLuca. “Everything is secure
and it is clear how security works with Alfresco – and simple to relay that to our users.”