Pittsburgh-based Highmark Inc., a provider of health insurance to about 4.6 million Pennsylvanians, ranked third in an annual list of the nation’s top 500 innovators of information technology.
InformationWeek magazine, a national information systems publication, recognized Highmark’s use of cutting-edge software to juggle and crunch the massive amount of health insurance and claim information that pours into the company’s actuarial department every day.
Believing timely data to be the best way to accurately price premiums and build a strong customer base, Highmark’s created the Actuarial Trend System based on a software product from Ohio-based Teradata. The system saves $200,000 a year by eliminating time spent on database queries, says Phil Neubauer, company spokesman.
In addition, Highmark was lauded for its green efforts, reducing energy consumption at its 87,000 square foot LEED-certified data center in Hershey, Pa. Highmark has cut $100,000 off its annual energy bill by reducing electricity consumption, a process that began with the simple step of eliminating 100 underutilized servers that were chugging away, wasting power.
“We are especially proud to be recognized for our efforts to be environmentally responsible,” says Tom Tabor, Highmark’s senior vice president of information services. “When we began thinking about a new data center a number of years ago, we realized being environmentally friendly was an important part of the project. This strategy goes beyond the data and center and is part of the entire information technology area.”
The $12.4 billion company employs 19,000 people worldwide, about 11,000 people in the state and 5,000 in the Pittsburgh region. Highmark is currently hiring between 15 and 20 people for customer service and technical positions.
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Source: Tom Tabor, Phil Neubauer, Highmark
Writer: Deb Smit, Innovation News Editor for Pop City, our Pittsburgh-based sister publication