Asepeyo is a nonprofit mutual insurance company that provides healthcare services and processes benefits for work-related accidents and occupational diseases. The organization operates in collaboration with Spain’s Social Security system, covering over 2.2 million workers employed by more than 267,000 companies.
Founded in 1915, Asepeyo currently employs more than 3,300 people in 142 health centers, four hospitals, five rehabilitation centers and dozens of administrative offices throughout the country.
Founded in 1968, Costaisa has pioneered the governance of highly complex and high-performance information technology infrastructures, both in mainframe and “pure” or hybrid cloud environments, with the main market providers. Costaisa has had the privilege of witnessing the emergence of IT in Spain and spearheading its implementation in major corporations including Asepeyo.
To support service innovation and set itself apart in Spain’s competitive mutual insurance space, Asepeyo is building a more modern and flexible technology infrastructure. To accelerate the pace of digital transformation, the organization is working with longtime IT services provider, Costaisa, to embrace containerization. It has placed Rancher Prime at the heart of these efforts — gaining powerful automation tools and orchestration patterns to streamline the deployment and management of Kubernetes clusters, while bringing greater agility to business operations.
Innovating to stay ahead
In Spain, it is mandatory for employers to register with a government-sanctioned association to provide occupational safety and disability insurance. Asepeyo is one of 19 such organizations, and therefore, it must compete to defend its place in the mutual insurance value chain.
The organization has long focused on service innovation as a key differentiator, seeking new and more effective ways to serve customers and policyholders. With the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the need to transform became more urgent. Many employees switched overnight to working from home, and customers and policyholders largely adopted digital tools to replace routine face-to-face interactions with Asepeyo staff. Given significant restrictions around access to health centers and hospitals, arranging and delivering the remaining face-to-face services became more complex and time-consuming, spurring Asepeyo to pick up the pace of digital transformation.
Embracing a more agile infrastructure
As part of its transformation efforts, the organization has been working to modernize its technology landscape in partnership with longtime IT services provider, Costaisa. A specialist in technology consulting and business services for the healthcare industry, Costaisa, manages Asepeyo’s end-to-end IT infrastructure and supports hundreds of its applications and web services for employees and customers.
Having operated an extensive IBM WebSphere environment to run its applications for decades, Asepeyo has been working with Costaisa to migrate to a container-based architecture. The aim is to accelerate the delivery of new and updated applications, as well as improve the stability and availability of digital services.
Aristarc Diez Redorta, Costaisa’s operations and cloud services director, states: “Our company has been working with Asepeyo since 1968; we’ve been right there beside them as their operations and IT have evolved. For this latest technology engagement, we responded to a public tender, and our proposal came out on top. We picked up everything in the area of infrastructure and application development, including migrating business applications to Docker containers, managed using Kubernetes orchestration software.”
“Having these three SUSE solutions all tightly integrated makes life much easier from an IT management perspective and gives us real peace of mind.”
Trusted container management
With Asepeyo operating an extensive stack of enterprise applications, it was crucial to adopt a consistent, automated approach to keep container management costs and complexity to a minimum. For this reason, Costaisa selected Rancher Prime, an open source, multi-cluster orchestration platform that supports all certified Kubernetes distributions.
“We have a long history of operating SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for Asepeyo on the IBM Z mainframe platform,” notes Aristarc. “We know the strengths that SUSE brings to the table, and they were the logical choice for Kubernetes cluster management. SUSE also supported us with consultancy services to make the move as smooth as possible.”
Over the course of several months, Costaisa helped Asepeyo carefully migrate applications and services to the Rancher Prime platform for Kubernetes orchestration. The team used the SUSE Linux Enterprise High Availability (SLE HA) Extension to establish multiple highavailability clusters for this landscape, maximizing uptime for its mission-critical workloads.
Today, Asepeyo runs multiple production and development environments in Rancher Prime, including Java, MongoDB, Elasticsearch and PostgreSQL. Asepeyo has also integrated SUSE Manager to enable automated Linux server provisioning, configuration and patching.
Greater efficiency, agility and reliability
For Asepeyo, unified cluster management is by far the biggest benefit offered by Rancher Prime. It can manage all Kubernetes clusters, both development and production, from a single interface — bringing greater consistency and efficiency to IT operations.
The organization can also rest assured that all clusters and supported applications will remain highly available and easy to manage, thanks to Rancher Prime’s close integration with the organization’s existing SUSE Manager and SLE HA Extension platforms.
“Having these three SUSE solutions all tightly integrated makes life much easier from an IT management perspective and gives us real peace of mind,” comments Aristarc. “The SLE HA Extension in particular allows us to guarantee up to six-nines uptime for the entire Linux landscape, so we can keep critical systems and services available to the business and customers around the clock.”
Asepeyo’s use of SUSE technology goes further still: the organization runs all its Java Application Ecosystems on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES). Investing in multiple elements of the SUSE portfolio means that Asepeyo enjoys singlesource support for several of its strategic platforms.
“We trust SUSE technology to run several of our most important landscapes,” says Aristarc. “Across all our SUSE solutions, the quality of the software and the support is extremely high. So, when SUSE acquired Rancher, it was an opportunity for us to extend that same quality of support to our container landscape.”
What’s next for Asepeyo?
With Rancher Prime, Asepeyo has gained all-important flexibility for the future. As demand for container-based applications continues to grow, the organization can meet the need with speed and ease — providing firm foundations for Asepeyo’s ongoing transformation to a more agile business. As the organization aims to lead the sector, the ability to rapidly pivot and offer new services, both internally and to customers, will clearly achieve its payback.
“As we build out our portfolio of containerized applications, more and more business value will become concentrated in this part of our infrastructure,” says Aristarc. “With SUSE as a strategic partner supporting this Kubernetes landscape, we are comfortable and look forward to even more significant benefits in the future.”