Case Study

Building a superannuation platform fit for the future

Ian Gibson, CIO for SuperChoice talks about their customer portal and the new design standard set by ClearPoint.
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SuperChoice Services Pty Ltd is Australia’s leading provider of superannuation management and clearing house services to employers and super funds. Its vision is to completely automate superannuation processing in order to deliver over AU$1 billion per annum of industry cost savings and enhanced customer service. Underlying this vision is the Australian government’s SuperStream reform legislation aimed at improving the efficiency of the superannuation system.

superchoice-chartTo achieve its vision, SuperChoice realised it needed to upgrade parts of its outdated clearing house system to a more efficient, cloud-enabled platform that could support expected growth in demand. SuperChoice knew that if it built an intuitive, user-friendly interface to its platform, it could attract new employers and super funds looking for a simple, compliant SuperStream solution. With the SuperStream deadline of 1st July 2014 approaching, the pressure was on to build new user portal and platform capabilities quickly.

Based on its reputation and funds management expertise, ClearPoint was selected in March 2014 to design and build SuperChoice’s new user portal. On time and on budget, ClearPoint delivered a high quality, user-friendly portal that exceeded expectations. ClearPoint’s user interface design was so impressive that SuperChoice has adopted it as the standard for other customer-facing portals to enable a consistent user experience across its entire system.

“ClearPoint consistently delivered when and what they said they would and produced quality work that was above expectations. ClearPoint set a new design standard that has become the model for our portals.” — Ian Gibson, CIO, SuperChoice

A partnership built on leadership and trust

At the initial meeting, it quickly became clear that ClearPoint offered the right capabilities in terms of frontend and back-end developers, and potentially more importantly, an Agile approach to development. Using the Agile methodology, fully functioning pieces of software were produced every two weeks, showing fast results and a visible return on investment. ClearPoint is also experienced in the funds management sector, having designed, developed and delivered solutions for the Australian Future Fund, as well as the NZ SuperFund and ACC Investments.

“ClearPoint’s cooperation and ability to deliver polished functioning mock-ups were integral to helping to secure buy-in from internal stakeholders.” — Ian Gibson, CIO, SuperChoice

 Moreover, there was a shared technology and team ethos that made it easy to communicate requirements and desired outcomes. This proved invaluable since SuperChoice’s small IT team had limited capacity for technical oversight and little time for multiple face-toface meetings that would typically be required to make a project run smoothly. ClearPoint continually delivered fully functioning pieces of software that exceeded expectations, establishing a relationship built on trust.

Putting the client first with a user-friendly, responsive portal

Under the new Australian Taxation Office’s (ATO) SuperStream reforms, employers must submit superannuation contribution data electronically in a standardised format to super funds. Traditional methods, i.e. snail mail, to transfer these messages between employers and super funds are error-prone, inefficient and no longer acceptable.

superchoice-content-screenshotSuperChoice’s clearing house platform processes over 26 million contribution payments on behalf of more than three million employees in Australia, and now also in the UK. Its platform simplifies and automates the process, therefore the public facing user portal has to reflect that simplicity, while still performing complex processing tasks behind the scenes. Design-wise, the user interface has to be intuitive and easy-to-use for non-technical staff at employers and super funds. Technically, it has to be secure and robust in order to process millions of transactions. In addition, the project had to be delivered within tight deadlines or SuperChoice would risk noncompliance.

Employing the Agile methodology, ClearPoint was able to deliver production-quality demos every two weeks which helped show immediate business benefits and increase stakeholder engagement. In short, ClearPoint delivered on time, within budget, above expectations and more. Its design work set new standards and its technical expertise enabled time and cost savings across other projects.

A cloud-enabled portal built for growth

SuperChoice now has secure, robust, customer friendly portal capabilities that have become the benchmark for all portals. Built on cloud technology, the platform is fit to grow as needed to support SuperChoice’s goal to completely automate the superannuation industry and deliver enhanced customer service and cost savings.

“At every step, ClearPoint got the little details right, so the big pieces were naturally able to fall into place.” — Ian Gibson, CIO, SuperChoice

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