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Case Study: Retirement Industry Insurance Giant Reduces Reporting Process from 30 Hours to 5 Minutes

March 13, 2020

The Challenge

A four billion dollar leader in the retirement industry was dealing with large quantities of data from many internal and external sources in various formats – files, databases, spreadsheets, etc. The challenge for them was to ingest, process, and store the data, making it available for reporting and analysis.

For parts of the organization, this reporting and analysis activity was using spreadsheets for either pre-processing or final reporting. To move away from Excel, the company invested in technology to help with the challenge. However, they were struggling to use what they had purchased and they didn’t have the capacity or knowledge around best practices to fully leverage their investment.

The Solution

MarksNelson’s data management and analytics experts started by identifying the short- and long-term needs of the organization. In the short-term, MarksNelson focused on supporting critical compliance requirements needed to support and simplify third-party audits and standardize and validate data ingestion. This meant focusing on automating the analysis and reporting for monthly and quarterly financial performance. Long-term, we wanted to automate and standardize their data management processes.

Starting with the more immediate short-term needs, we helped the company leverage a software they had already selected. Beginning with the analysis of their reports, we worked to condense and streamline. We then used the software to build and automate reporting while providing an auditable process that will be used to generate future reports. Lastly, we trained them on how to use and maintain the reports and how to use the software to build the future reports they would need.

As we continue our work, we evaluate the processes and tools and make recommendations for how to continue to improve the data and analytics capabilities of the company.


The results of both the automation and standardization of data for the client created measurable outcomes. We reduced the reporting process from 30 hours to less than five minutes. Further, the simplification of the reports has allowed them to gain efficiencies and reduce 200 individual reports to more than 120 reports generated on a monthly or quarterly basis. This has created capacity, reduced audit costs, and more importantly provided the client with better real time data.

Whether your organization needs help identifying and implementing a technology solution or you need assistance with a situation like this, where a solution decision was made and you need help fully realizing the value of the investment, we can help. We are product-independent and our focus is on supporting our clients with the best possible solution to meet their goals. Contact us to learn more about how we can help you with your technology challenges.


For more than 25 years Scott Woodward has served as a technology consultant to businesses of all sizes. He successfully helps organizations identify and implement solutions to support operational efficiencies and scale for growth, as well as map and improve customer experience. He leads teams... >>> READ MORE

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