Technologies2 min read

Sandro Lensi, A CIO Leading Digital Transformation at GILAI

VMware Staff

VMware’s Agents of Change initiative celebrates technology leaders who challenge the status quo. By harnessing the power of digital transformation, they create unlimited possibilities for their businesses. Here’s the next technology leader in the Agents of Change series: Sandro Lensi, CIO at GILAI.

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Tens of thousands of people and their families in Switzerland rely on the disability insurance system. It contributes to their rehabilitation and subsistence payments, helping their independence.

However, the administration of the Swiss disability insurance system is complex. It requires the co-ordination of 26 independent local authorities. Each stores a lot of citizen data, each has a different set of data regulations and each processes ten of thousands of payments a month.

GILAI provides centralized IT services to the disability insurance agencies for 19 of these local authorities. This enables the authorities to securely manage their citizen data and make these vitally important payments. However, they are not IT experts and are instead focused on providing advice and support to disabled people and their families.

Focus on the Business, Not IT

GILAI’s CIO, Sandro Lensi, embarked on a digital journey to transform GILAI’s service delivery model. The priority was to make service consumption by the authorities as intuitive and easy as possible. “Our clients want to focus on disability insurance, not on IT,” he says.

Hear more from Lensi in this video on new technologies and the changing role of the CIO.


The transformation of GILAI’s services has been underpinned by their recent introduction of a private cloud, built and managed with VMware solutions. Service delivery is faster, more reliable and more flexible. “GILAI provides a service to the public,” he continues. “Citizens rely on these services. We cannot afford to let our clients be out of action for a day; that would be unacceptable.”

Shift in IT Team Culture

GILAI’s CIO, Sandro Lensi, embarked on a digital transformation journey to transform GILAI’s service delivery model. The priority was to make service consumption by the authorities as intuitive and easy as possible.

High levels of cloud automation contributed to a culture shift of GILAI’s IT team. They have more time to experiment with new ideas, always focused on anticipating the needs of their clients. In fact, Lensi and his team now take great pride in understanding the needs of the people who administer the disability payments. They also take pride in understanding the policyholders who receive the benefit payments.

This new mindset helps GILAI map where new technologies can add value to its services. GILAI supplements this with guidance from strategic IT partners, like VMware.

“VMware helps us understand the ever-accelerating stream of technological innovations. When combined with our intimate market knowledge, we can evaluate new technologies effectively. So when they are available on the market, we’re already in a position to know which will address our needs and which won’t.”

When asked which new technologies could disrupt how GILAI operates, Lensi points to containers.

Containerization is having a big influence on GILAI. That’s where we see the greatest potential.

"If we provide business applications, we'd like them to be containerized. We don’t want to speed up server provision or desktop provision, only to find that the business application still has a degree of latency. So for us, it's a package to be developed, and containerization will help us become faster when delivering our business application services.”

Learn from Other Agents of Change

u003cpu003eThis article is the latest in the Agents of Change series, a look at how technology leaders challenge the status quo to discover new possibilities for their organizations.u003c/pu003e