The number 3 health insurance company in Switzerland, Groupe Mutuel, has given itself 5 years to overhaul its information system in Java RCP. It has entrusted rewriting its financial and litigation management application, currently in AS/400, to Hardis Group. A project that will take 5,100 man/days, spread over 16 months, until June 2012.

Hardis Group, an IT services, software publishing and facilities management company, and its partner API SA, a Swiss IT company specializing in consulting, systems integration and IT infrastructure management, announced the signing of a major new contract with Groupe Mutuel, the number 3 health insurance company in Switzerland. Objective: to completely rewrite Groupe Mutuel's financial and litigation management application, in the broader context of the NOVA project for overhauling the information system of the insurance association.

Financial and litigation management: the last module in AS/400

With 1.3 million customers, Groupe Mutuel, the number 3 health and accident insurance company in Switzerland, is an association of four insurers, representing nearly 1,800 employees and 3,000 brokers. Five years ago, the Group embarked on a major project: the complete overhaul of the Java RCP information system, to modernize it and align it to the needs of businesses.

Financial and litigation management is one of the latest applications, but also the most critical for Groupe Mutuel: with 700 users, it is used to manage the insurance group's key business processes. Today it is the last module still running on AS / 400, and it is becoming urgent to replace it since it alone means that it is necessary to keep and maintain the old platform.

Hardis Group: the "natural" contact

In its current version, the financial and litigation management module was developed with Hardis' Adelia Studio software engineering tool. For the Groupe Mutuel IS department, it was natural to turn to the publisher to determine the feasibility of an automatic transformation of RPG for AS/400 of Java origin. "We advised Groupe Mutuel against migrating such a critical application with a tool of this kind since experience shows that it does not give good results: it is impossible to automate recovery and rewriting of all the business rules, says Joanne Barfety, Sales Engineer at Hardis. Moreover, this kind of project deserves that the ergonomics of the application be optimized, the difference between the screens in AS/400 and Java being too great".

This technical requirement led Hardis Group and its partner API SA to offer Groupe Mutuel a new development in Java RCP facilitated by Hardis staff's knowledge of applications designed using Adelia Studio and their ability to make a retro-specification of the existing system. Hardis' ten years of experience in carrying out Java projects, together with its very pragmatic approach to securing projects by tests and acceptance have quickly convinced the Groupe Mutuel IT managers, who for the first time since launching the NOVA project, chose to outsource the development of a module.

16 months and 5,100 man/days

Although the initial idea was to iso-functionality rewrite the entire application, the first steering meetings with key users quickly led to a division of the project into 2 lots: rewriting the financial application at constant perimeter, and functional redefinition of litigation management, particularly the integration of processes that were hitherto outside the application before their Java development.

Although reading the existing code and translating it into businesses and functionality rules are simplified by the fact that Hardis Group is the publisher of Adelia Studio, the project is estimated at 5,100 man/days, including 1,600 for redefining and writing the litigation perimeter. The project was begun in March 2011 and scheduled to take place over 16 months. It is expected to be readjusted between now and June depending on the results of the analyses of the existing system and the prototype under development.