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When Physicians Mutual Insurance Company decided to begin a customer-focused business transformation program and implement a service-oriented architecture (SOA) in 2004, Dan Simpson, senior vice president and CIO, knew such a major transformation required more than just implementing new systems. It required changing how people work together to develop innovative solutions.

To that end, the health insurance company opened an off-site office for the more than 40 business and IT employees selected to work on what is known internally as the Greenfield program–a reference by the carrier to an old industrial term meaning to go outside and start from scratch.

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