London & Belfast – October 17th, 2011 – Acorn Life, a 100% Irish-owned life assurance company based in Galway, has chosen IT consulting specialist, Kainos to equip its 200-strong direct sales force with a state-of-the-art sales automation and customer relationship management (CRM) system.

Acorn Life provides a broad spectrum of protection, savings and investment products to the Irish public, distributed through a network of over 200 sales associates located across the Republic. The sales performance of these self-employed entrepreneurs is directly related to the number of appointments they secure with prospective customers.

The comprehensive new software system, based on Microsoft Dynamics which Kainos is configuring and customising for Acorn Life’s distributed sales force, will be fully integrated with Acorn Life’s own sales and marketing applications. It will provide a holistic, single view of each customer, enabling Acorn Life and its sales associates to track customer contact and sales activity in an unprecedented way, maximising opportunities to secure new business.

“This initiative with Kainos is designed to improve the IT systems used by our sales associates so that they can better manage and build their businesses,” explains Gerard Ryan, Operations Director at Acorn Life.

“Previously, they lacked a formal system for managing their diaries and tracking client interactions. Now they will have the ability via their phone and laptop to manage their contacts in a single, integrated system where they can issue letters, set reminders, add notes about significant upcoming events, and see at a glance the status of any given account. In this way, managing customers will become much simpler.”

The roll-out, due to be completed by the first quarter of next year, is Acorn Life’s single biggest IT project to date and is the first stage in a more ambitious programme of work planned to overhaul its point of sale and quotation system. The company chose Kainos to implement this Microsoft Dynamics based solution, thanks to its track record in projects of this nature. “Kainos had the Microsoft experience, the financial services sector experience, a good understanding of our requirements, and a reputation for successful IT implementations,” Gerard notes. “We were also attracted to Kainos’s size, as we felt we would matter to them as a client.”

“This is a crucial project for us,” Gerard concludes. “It will significantly increase our business, and is essential to our future – specifically our goal to be the largest and most productive direct sales force in Irish financial services within the next five years.”

About Acorn Life

Acorn Life is a 100% Irish-owned life assurance company offering protection, savings and investment products to the Irish public. Acorn Life provides a wide range of financial services and is dedicated to excellence through advanced administration systems and quality customer service. It distributes its products through a nationwide team of over 200 sales associates. At the end of 2009, the company had assets of €379 million and premium income amounting to €99 million. More at www.acornlife.ie