Kinsale Insurance Maintains Business-Critical Email Communications with Zimbra

Kinsale is an insurance provider specializing in “hard to place” small to medium sized commercial accounts for property, casualty and specialty policies. With an increasing amount of the company’s business transacted via email, they needed to choose a reliable system with rich features that would support the staff’s revenue-generating efforts. Kinsale needed Zimbra.

The Challenge

“In the last few years, I have seen the insurance industry move to email-based communication versus telephone, postal mail or fax,” says Alex Albro, Network Team Lead at Kinsale Insurance. “We do 95% of our business through email. The money comes in through email now, so if we were down for 15 minutes, that could translate to millions of dollars. Email is business-critical. It is our lifeline.”

At its founding three years ago, Kinsale Insurance chose Zimbra as its communications solution. Today the entire company transacts a majority of its business via email using Zimbra.

“The constant support and continuous upgrading of Zimbra by VMware means there are always new versions coming out with innovative new features,” Albro comments. “I like how Zimbra is progressing.”

“Zimbra is built on an open source design where the community is very involved,” he adds. “Issues seem to be worked out much faster. The forums and the open source community support are an important part of Zimbra, and that is really big advantage for us.”

Deployment Overview

“We are very safe with our deployments,” explains Albro. “We try solutions in multiple environments and stress test them. Compared to other email systems, it was not as big of a hurdle to integrate Zimbra into our environment. We were very surprised and pleased about that.”

Business Results & Benefits

Kinsale Insurance gains the following benefits by offering Zimbra:

Improved Performance and Reliability – 

“Performance is a big advantage of Zimbra,” Albro states. “With Zimbra we do not experience any performance problems. Zimbra doesn’t go down. The system doesn’t freeze up on our users. That was the main challenge that Zimbra solved right away.”

The performance advantage alone convinced Albro and the Network team that Kinsale had made the right choice with Zimbra.

Greater Mobility –

“One of the main capabilities of Zimbra that we benefit from is the mobile integration,” says Albro. “Allowing our users to stay mobile and get their email – that has been one of the greatest benefits of Zimbra.”

All of Kinsale’s executives and management team use their own personal devices –  a variety of smartphones including Blackberry, iPhone and Android  – and they all integrate with Zimbra. It is a very easy transition every time a new phone comes out. Albro notes that whenever an employee brings in a new phone, it works seamlessly with Zimbra.

“Having the option to use any mobile device allowed us to expand in a way that we could not imagine before, especially with all the tablets and other new mobile devices coming out,” says Albro. “We used to have to control our user’s devices. With Zimbra, our users have the ability to choose their own phones, and keep a personal and business line, instead of having to carry two devices.”

Easy Maintenance –

“Zimbra is very easy to maintain,” Albro points out. “Zimbra support has been very helpful, and the forums are great.”

Reduced Administration Time –

“Zimbra reduces administration time by 90%, compared to what we used in the past,” Albro confirms. “Everything is a lot quicker with Zimbra.”

Faster Troubleshooting –

Troubleshooting time is much faster with Zimbra, Albro says, adding that the logs in Zimbra are much better and more detailed than in other systems.

“If something goes wrong, I can find it easily and quickly in the logs or with Zimbra support,” he explains.

Increased User Productivity –

Zimbra’s ease of administration and problem solving is not only about the Kinsale IT team’s time and effort. It also helps increase the productivity of users across the company. For example, if the IT team has to perform a restore on a mailbox, a user is often waiting to access business-critical information that could impact revenue. Albro says it is vital to complete restores as quickly as possible and keep the system running at top performance.

“Our business is very time sensitive,” he explains. “If the user is waiting for one email that they need to write their business, it could absolutely hurt the user’s productivity that day. If we can get the restore done faster, there is a much better chance that Kinsale can gain the business. From a maintenance standpoint, Zimbra is much better and much quicker, and that impacts our users’ productivity.”


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