The UK’s largest building society, Nationwide has recently undertaken three services and technology initiatives to cut costs and deliver operational benefits.

The initiatives were made possible as a result of extending it long-term IT outsourcing services from Unisys to overhaul key IT infrastructure, including storage and mainframes.

The company has deployed Unisys ClearPath Dorado mainframes with pay-for-use features to increase processing capacity by a minimum of 25%, giving customers faster access to online services. The deployment has been key in establishing a real-time infrastructure, where information technology directly and dynamically serves strategic business processes.

And the initiatives include technology support and maintenance services for the building society’s Unisys ClearPath Dorado mainframes and associated peripherals; a mainframe upgrade path for the Unisys mainframes in Nationwide’s Swindon technology centre and Wellingborough development and disaster recovery centre; and implementation of a high-performance EMC disk storage system to support database-intensive applications and customer service requirements.

“Nationwide anticipates that the upgraded ClearPath systems, enhanced storage and extended support Unisys provides will enable us to continue growing and accommodating an expanding customer base more effectively while lowering our IT costs over the long term,” said Michael Humphreys, Nationwide Building Society IT director.

A key part of Nationwide Building Society’s expansion strategy is a planned merger with the UK’s Portman Building Society, which is expected to become effective by the end of August 2007, subject to confirmation by the Financial Services Authority.