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Munich Re and Essence - An OMG Case Study

Kernel and Language for Software Engineering Methods

Munich Re is an insurance company combining primary insurance and reinsurance. It operates in all lines of insurance, with headquarters based in Munich, Germany and with almost 45,000 employees throughout the world. With premium income of around €28bn from reinsurance alone and with approximately 11,000 employees worldwide in reinsurance, it is one of the world’s leading reinsurers.

In the last decade, Germany has experienced a shortage of testers and developers in application development. The skill shortage is expected to become more critical in the future. That is why senior management at the company’s application development function for reinsurance decided to prepare the organization for a high level of outsourcing and offshoring in this area. In 2008, the function reorganized for better collaboration with its outsourcing partners.

After two years of working this way, the internal staff and the suppliers’ staff realized that they misjudged how well they could work together. That year, the IT function for reinsurance at Munich Re came to the conclusion that it required a new way of developing applications. A main objective was to define a standard lifecycle as a blueprint for a “healthy” project. The challenge, however, was that there was no common language that allowed the internal staff and its outsourcing partners to characterize the “healthiness” of a project.

ESSENCE is a very helpful tool to provide guidance to the projects….nothing in this standard is company-specific, the ESSENCE elements are universal to all application development endeavors…

Burkhard Golomb-Perkens
Munich Re