CA CF NL Consumer Finance Nederland B.V. is a financing company that needed to revamp its outdated core banking system to drive its digital transformation strategy and outpace the competition. CA CF NL initially intended to create only a few apps with the OutSystems low-code development platform. However, they soon realized how easy it was to replace their legacy systems as well as build new applications for other subsidiaries of their company. Now, their plan is to continue to build native mobile apps with OutSystems and become the company’s Mobile Development Center of Excellence.
Legacy System Modernization Creates a Competitive Advantage
Challenge - CA CF NL is part of Crédit Agricole Consumer Finance, a leading player in the European consumer credit market. With an outstanding portfolio of over 2.3 billion euros, CA CF NL is one of the largest finance companies.
CA CF NL is committed to digital transformation and, as part of that, the company wanted to update its legacy banking applications.
“CA CF NL is basically an IT company with a banking license,” says Erwin Kooiman, senior manager IT, who leads a team of IT specialists covering functional and technical maintenance. After analysing the challenge he faced, Kooiman realized he was going to need some help. That’s when he started looking at the OutSystems low-code platform.
"With OutSystems low-code development platform, we can build native mobile apps that will give us a huge competitive advantage and help us fulfil our goal of becoming a true digital financing partner."
Low-code Platform an Ideal Integration Tool That Delivers Speed at Enterprise Scale
Solution - CA CF NL’s architects quickly concluded that OutSystems was the best option for them, recalls Kooiman. “In addition to being a good development platform, it fit well into our core systems, which made it ideal for integration.”
Kooiman adds, "Initially, we only wanted to develop a few non-critical systems ourselves but soon we decided to start developing mission-critical systems. We also bridged the gap between off-the-shelf solutions and tailored systems that make us unique.”
CA CF NL felt it was important to work closely with OutSystems and an integration partner on the legacy system modernization. "The core banking system and ESB are critical to our business, so the transition had to be done right in one go," Kooiman explains. "I was really pleased with the guidance we received, first from OutSystems in Portugal, and later from our Dutch implementation partner COOLProfs."
Another aspect of OutSystems that Kooiman and his team really liked is that it enables rapid interaction between developers as well as testers and users. That means that applications can be delivered and adapted quickly, increasing interaction with the business.
Applications built with OutSystems include:
- Replacing interfaces and modules that were connected to the outdated core banking system.
- Building an enterprise service bus (ESB) that would connect different platforms to the banking system.
- Developing a product catalog application to manage CA CF NL’s financial products and reduce the complexity of maintaining products in the Core Bank environment.
- Creating an application that allows customers to compare different financial offers and that functions as a contact platform between employees and clients. This took only 6 weeks to build and deploy.
- Optimizing process flows and introducing process orchestration, allowing the core processes of the bank to become full STP (Straight Through Processing).
OutSystems Helps CA CF NL Become a Mobile Development Center of Excellence
Results - Kooiman and his team were pleasantly surprised by the ease and speed of building native mobile apps, and this led to the idea of becoming a Mobile Development Center of Excellence.
Kooiman couldn’t be happier with the way things are going. “Our IT team becomes a well-oiled machine running at full speed. With this new élan, we are convinced we will be able to maintain our position in the market and face the challenges of digitalization ahead.”
OutSystems enabled CA CF NL’s IT team to:
- Build any kind of application they needed, fast and easy
- Implement an agile development methodology
- Rejuvenate the IT team and become a more attractive employer for young and savvy developers