Back in the prehistoric 1990s, The Hartford Financial Services Group applied technology the old-fashioned way. It used a vertically oriented approach to solve problems in discreet business silos.Today, the $15-billion investment and insurance company is taking an enterprisewide viewpoint when it applies information technology. This new approach ties together disparate information technology offerings, simplifies some of the complexity of e-business and makes it easier for distributors to sell and service The Hartford's insurance products.

In 2002, The Hartford launched two major e-initiatives to provide the kind of service customers have come to expect in the digital age. The programs-broadly called eSales and eService-make it easier, faster and simpler for distributors, brokers and agents to execute electronic business procedures with the Hartford, Conn.-based insurance carrier.

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