Sun National Bank Consolidates ATM, Phone Services On IBM i5 Server

Tri-state area community bank answers scalability and reliability needs by devoting IBM midrange server to customer traffic and compliance functions.

May 4, 2005

2 Min Read
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Sun National Bank, a Vineland, N.J. community bank with branches spread out throughout New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware, is capping a period of growth in an unusual way -- shrinking its data center. The bank recently moved its ATM, online and phone banking services onto one server, an IBM eServer iSeries i5, that bank officials say should provide Sun with a flexible growth path for the foreseeable future.

The bank feels that the i5 550 that it brought online about two weeks ago provides a scalable, reliable system that can accommodate future bank growth or processing needs, said Lou Pellicori, Sun National's executive vice president and chief information officer.

"This is something that gives us true scalability -- in the operating system, discs, storage, processing cycles, everything," said Pellicori. "That was really the main factor in our choice."

The move was necessary to handle the increased amount of customer traffic that the bank has experienced, following a growth period that resulted in nearly double the calls to its telephone banking channel and a 40 percent increase per year of online banking customers since 2002.

Sun National had been running IBM xSeries servers, which will be maintained to support other applications, Pellicori said. Currently, the bank uses Windows and Kirchman core bank processing software on the i5 550 to handle the remote banking services, as well as other customer delivery systems and regulatory and compliance software packages, but the bank also likes the iSeries line's ability to run other operating systems. "We're not on AIX or Linux," Pellicori said. "But the shared environment that the iSeries supports provides us with those choices if we wanted to use those later on.""For Sun National Bank, the ability to manage multiple distribution channels from one platform gives them the flexibility and responsiveness to compete with larger players. The iSeries platform ensures that the Bank has a clear competitive advantage within this competitive industry," said Mark Shearer, IBM's general manager for the eServer iSeries, in a statement.

The cutover, done by Sun National's IT staff in conjunction with IBM engineers after a few months worth of planning, "was literally almost to the minute," Pellicori said.

"The criticality of the conversion was something we definitely planned for," he said. "We strove for continuity of service, and aside from a few minutes of planned downtime, we were able to achieve that."

Since bringing the i5 550 online, the bank has been able to cut its standard daily batch operations from five hours to two, Pellicori said.

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