RESEARCH & RESOURCES

CASE STUDY - NASCO: Creating a Data Warehousing Strategy to Deliver Exceptional Customer Service

Commentary by NASCO

Company Overview

The National Account Service Company, better known as NASCO, is a system and service organization dedicated to processing BlueCross® and BlueShield® Plan healthcare claims across the U.S. Each year NASCO processes more than 120 million healthcare claims for 7 million members belonging to 1,700 local and national accounts. NASCO offers its clients the best connectivity and the fastest, most scalable processing system. Its total-solution approach to health benefits processing helps Blue Plans gain a competitive edge in the market.

Business Challenge

Recently, as NASCO’s business expanded, its executives recognized that continued growth might eventually hinder its customer service. While excellent customer service is critical at almost every company, it is even more important at NASCO, where it is considered a primary differentiator.

To combat potential customer service problems long before they could arise, and to accommodate customer requests, NASCO began exploring numerous strategies, including a data warehouse strategy. Recognizing the magnitude of undertaking a full-scale data warehousing initiative, NASCO took a “first-things-first” approach to investigating options before considering an action plan.

While creating the data warehousing strategy, NASCO executives recognized numerous implementation benefits. Specifically, the strategy could enhance customer service in several inventive ways. Chief among these was the ability to create a Web-based, interactive reporting and analysis environment for its customer BlueCross and BlueShield Plans. In addition, NASCO would be able to give Plans access to an extract-creation capability. Improving the reporting structure is important to BlueCross and BlueShield Plans.

Recently, as NASCO’s business expanded, its executives recognized that continued growth might eventually hinder its customer service. While excellent customer service is critical at almost every company, it is even more important at NASCO, where it is considered a primary differentiator.

These enhancements would represent a far more flexible approach and provide customers with greater service, in addition to self-service capabilities. Enhanced reporting and analysis would also enable NASCO to resolve customer requests more quickly, at less cost, and with less intervention from information technology professionals.

To create its data warehousing strategy, NASCO engaged Collaborative Consulting, a partner on other business and technology projects within the organization. After listing the requirements, NASCO and Collaborative Consulting created a clear vision of a new, Web-based data warehousing platform. NASCO also gained a detailed, step-by-step road map spelling out what actions it must undertake to achieve its short- and long-term data warehousing objectives.

Benefits

Today, NASCO is well equipped for its future growth. The company’s leaders know precisely what the organization must accomplish to achieve their interactive reporting objectives.

And because NASCO considered its customers’ perspectives throughout the process of establishing a data warehousing vision and road map, it is closer to offering enhanced customer service when the business intelligence system is established. The vision and technical blueprint for providing key reports and analytical insights are critical to NASCO’s Plan customers, who will benefit from improved service and in their ability to manage their growing business.

In addition, the data warehousing vision and road map calls for value-added releases over time, enabling NASCO to build on the valuable analytical capabilities that will be established upon beginning the data warehousing initiative. As time goes on, NASCO will be able to extend that functionality in a managed, skillful manner.

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