ING-DiBa: SAS® Analytics for every situation
With more than 7 million customers, ING-DiBa is the largest direct bank in Germany. Euro magazine has named it Germany's Favorite Bank, and readers of the magazine Börse Online voted ING-DiBa the Online Broker of the Year 2011. With SAS Analytics, bank executives have the level of decision support they need to achieve such accolades.
"SAS is the analytical heart of ING-DiBa," says Gisela Hehn, MIS/Data Warehouse Division Manager. "With our new SAS solution, we have been able to double the process speed, while profiting from an even greater analytical depth. Both of these aspects are of great strategic importance to us. "
"We work for the entire bank, for a wide variety of departments," Hehn explains.
She and her colleagues provide daily management reporting for more than 300 individuals, as well as regular reports, ad hoc analyses and data sets for several departments.
"Since we have access to all of the operative data, we are able to consolidate data from different sources in order to allow our colleagues to use it as a basis for their own analyses," Hehn says.
One of those analyses is for the selection of recipients for mailings, including customers and potential customers.
"ING-DiBa sends out more than 40 million mailings a year," reports Eike Bärmann, Division Manager of Target Group Selection at ING-DiBa. "It is extremely important to select the right customers for a respective offer."
The bank has successfully used SAS Business Analytics since 1999 – but realized it was time for a major expansion.
"Switching to an offer from another software provider was not even up for discussion," explains Hehn. "We were and are still extremely satisfied with SAS – and we knew that SAS had the components we needed to bring our solution to the next level."
The bank wanted a solution that was easier to use, even for business users, but also one with great analytical depth and improved speed. To achieve these goals, it upgraded to SAS 9.2 and added SAS BI Server, SAS® Enterprise Guide® and SAS® Enterprise Miner™ to its business analytics environment.
The conversion, during which ING-DiBa relied on support from SAS partner Decadis, went smoothly.
"It took us precisely three months from the first step of the conversion to the startup," says Hehn. "Our long-term service provider, Decadis, provided exemplary support during the process. From analysis to implementation of the new hardware and software, the project ran like clockwork."
This is extremely important to ensure the smooth flow of analytical processes, particularly since Hehns' division has 600 programs or analyses running simultaneously, most of them feeding results into daily reports.
To do so, SAS pulls current data from a wide variety of systems and consolidates it in a data warehouse, where it is analyzed and then delivered to the departments or integrated into the Management Information System (MIS).
"We need the best possible analytics solution for these complex processes, and for us that solution is clearly SAS," states Hehn. "Before, our daily data runs took four hours."
Now the work takes only half the time – and it's done in a single run. "That reduces the complexity considerably," says Hehn.
Today, Hehn and her colleagues can perform customer data analyses and make customer selections for mailings even faster and more precisely than before. Customer responses flow back into the system, creating an efficient learning cycle for marketing.
"The solution delivers data we can use to realize the best possible response rate. This puts us in a position to realize maximum customer feedback with minimal use of resources," says Bärmann.
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Synchronization and fast processing of up to 600 programs and analyses per day to provide optimal response rate on customer and prospect mailings
New SAS infrastructure doubled the speed of analyses, simplified processes, and was more user-friendly. Strategically important analyses of the operative database flow into the MIS for efficient use of resources and an optimal response rate
“SAS is the analytical heart of ING-DiBa. With our new SAS solution, we have been able to double the process speed, while profiting from an even greater analytical depth. Both of these aspects are of great strategic importance to us.”
Division Manager, MIS/Data Warehouse