IBM Helps the University of California Manage Risk with Advanced Analytics

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OAKLAND, Calif., - 25 Mar 2010: The University of California is using advanced analytics services and technology from IBM (NYSE: IBM) to better manage the frequency and severity of risks, control the cost of risk, enhance the safety of the UC systems community, resources and facilities, and eliminate technology redundancies.

IBM worked with the University systems Office of Risk Services to design and build the Enterprise Risk Management System based on IBM's analytics, portal and collaboration software to help manage liabilities across UC's 10 campuses, five medical centers, laboratories and field sites. Information on the real and potential risks from departments and locations is aggregated for better insights and management so that UC administrators can isolate recurring incidents and break the cycle of injuries or costs due to operations failures. A wide variety of quick-view dashboard monitors allow risk managers to better understand their performance relative to peer organizations, determine best practices and implement risk mitigation strategies.

The IBM solution not only allows UC to gain a clearer understanding of its managed risks, but of how improved practices and policies can mitigate future risk exposure as well. By analyzing the return-on-investment associated with its risk remediation strategies and tactics, UC can make better decisions when it comes to allocating resources and educating the UC system's 180,000 staff and 228,000 students on potential risk factors and procedures to reduce risk.

"The best way to mitigate risk is through prevention and preparation, and IBM's analytics technology provides us with the real-time data we need to be able to do that," said Grace Crickette, Chief Risk Officer for the University of California. "This is a first-of-a-kind system that allows us to get a meaningful understanding, at both a campus and system wide level, of the current state of the UC's system's level of risk, and document the best practices that allow us to manage and reduce it."

The concept is to manage all areas of risk across the UC system by monitoring, tracking and creating a unified database that can be mined locally by campuses and at a systemwide level, so that trends can be spotted early and acted upon.

Crickette cited workers compensation trends to illustrate the effectiveness of the program. Since the institution deployed the Enterprise Risk Management System program, the Risk Services office has been able to mine data rolled up from the university's 10 campuses and five medical centers and to deploy resources where most needed to invest in loss prevention and control. Spotting trends -- push/pull injuries in the medical centers, for example -- has allowed the system to respond by instituting training programs, introducing new equipment, focusing on accountability with management and working with employees directly. As a result, the number of employee injuries and the costs campuses pay for the workers compensation insurance have been significantly reduced. Injuries have been cut by 39 percent and cost for insurance has dropped by $167,863,000 since the system's partial deployment in 2006.

"We are now able to determine where we are the most vulnerable by creating dashboards so managers can access their data in real time," Crickette said. "They can target the key variables that influence outcomes and make changes to increase productive trends or intercede in operations that are having a negative impact."

Traditionally, risk management programs in many sectors have relied heavily on quantitative analysis, but have lacked qualitative measures and analysis. Using the advanced analytics and business intelligence capabilities of IBM Cognos software, UC's Enterprise Risk Management System employs both a quantitative and qualitative approach to highlight emerging risks and assist with activating avoidance measures when catastrophic losses may occur.

"The work being done at The University of California system is all about finding a smarter approach to a complicated problem through the use of innovative technology -- in this case, advanced analytics for a more effective and efficient risk management portfolio," said Bridget van Kralingen, general manager, IBM North America. "We now have the means -- the processing power and analytics capabilities -- to sift through the data and extract meaning in ways that previously were not possible. With these insights and the expertise of 4,000 skilled IBM analytics professionals, we are finding new ways to lower cost, reduce waste, improve efficiency, increase productivity and raise the quality of everything from products, to companies, to economic systems, to universities systems to the cities we live in."

About the University of California System

The University of California contributes to the state's economic vitality and the quality of life of all Californians through its educational opportunities, groundbreaking research and valuable cultural resources. With more than 228,000 students, 180,000 faculty and staff, 50,000 retirees and nearly 1.6 million living alumni, UC is transforming lives, inspiring innovation, empowering creativity and driving prosperity throughout the state, the nation and the world.

UC has 10 campuses, five medical centers, 16 health professional schools, four law schools, the state's only public veterinary school, plus professional and enrichment courses and agricultural and natural resources programs which extend learning throughout California. At the three U.S. Department of Energy laboratories the university helps manage, UC leads our nation's highest-priority research in fields ranging from national security to energy efficiency.

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