KBC (ČSOB) Czech Republic Case Study
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ČSOB Group, founded in 1964, is a member of KBC Group, an integrated bank-assurance group, catering mainly for retail customers, small and medium-sized enterprises and private banking clientele. KBC occupies leading positions on its home markets of Belgium and Central and Eastern Europe, where it specializes in retail bank-assurance and asset management activities, as well as in the provision of services to businesses.
Combining the power of its retail brands – ČSOB (banking, insurance, asset management, pension funds, leasing and factoring), the Postal Savings Bank (banking through postal distribution network), the Mortgage Bank and the CMSS (bank specialized for financing the housing needs) – ČSOB group holds strong market positions in all segments of Czech financial market.
ČSOB Group wanted to execute a business transformation program called the Self Service Platform (SSP) in order to strengthen its position as a leading financial services provider in the Czech market. The program was driven by the following objectives:
Transformation into a customer-centric organization
A value proposition that focused on simplicity and convenience through multi-channel access and cross channel distribution, to increase customer convenience and thus loyalty
Extend the service offering – banking and non-banking–to customers via integration with group members, government and 3rd parties
Shorten time to market by introducing innovative approach to the new services implementation
Within the group, it was decided that a portal would be the best functional and technological fit, and chose Liferay Portal. A range of portal options were evaluated to host the site, and following a pre-study, Liferay emerged as the most suitable technology due to the following factors:
State-of-the-art in front-end layer and rich on features
Easy integration with J2EE, group development standard
Optimal fit into landscape and total cost of ownership
As a proof of concept, ČSOB Group decided to execute a full 1-to-1 porting of its Postal Savings Bank brand into Liferay Portal. On the highest of levels, the project was divided into the following two parts:
Migration from the existing web Portal to Liferay
Implementation of bank requirements as new Enterprise Features for Liferay
Migration from portal to liferay
The migration involved a porting of CMS (content) and webpart applications (functionality) from Microsoft SharePoint Server to Liferay Portal 6.0 EE.
A fully automated SharePoint-to-Liferay Content Migration application was implemented in order to allow content migrations to be repeatable across all environment pillars and reusable for future utilization in other SharePoint-driven portals. The approach of the site-wide migration employed a 2-pass mechanism; automated inspection via SharePoint APIs and export of the SharePoint CMS content into an export package, followed by a Java-based import of all content using Liferay API.
The functional migration scope involved porting over roughly 50 web-part applications implemented in .NET (with highly customized behavior that had been integrated to bank back-ends and 3rd-party services) into JSR-286 compliant portlet applications deployed into Liferay. This was accomplished through agile development iterations over the course of 3 months.
Implementation of bank requirements as new enterprise features for Liferay
The project was presented with an exhaustive list of business requirements to be delivered throughout the course of the implementation. Many requirements were satisfied through Liferay’s comprehensive suite of out-of-the-box tools. Additional features were also implemented and seamlessly integrated into the portal, including:
Legacy Links Management
Link Integrity Management
Google Analytics Framework
Business Value Added
Following the successful deployment of the ČSOB proof of concept, ČSOB has continued to work with Liferay and their implementation partner, the Emeldi Group, on new development and enhancements on their portal framework. Today Liferay and Emeldi provide and support the entire enterprise portal framework for ČSOB reinforcing its competitive edge on the commercial banking marketplace in the Czech Republic