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Microsoft Windows Server System
Customer Solution Case Study

/ / New Private Sector Bank Uses Technology as the Business Differentiator
Country: India
Industry: Banking
Customer Profile
YES BANK, set up in 2004 is India’s new age private sector bank. Committed to establishing a high quality, customer centric, service driven, private Indian bank, it employs technology as a strategic business tool for a competitive advantage.
Business Situation
YES BANK wanted to use technology as a business differentiator in an attempt to distinguish itself from other private banks which had over a decade long advantage over it.
It deployed a new IT infrastructure based on Microsoft® SQL Server™ 2005, Windows Server 2003, Visual Studio 2005 and Internet Security and Acceleration Server 2004.
 Integrated technology platform reduces time to deploy new technologies
 Easier manageability
 Higher levels of security / “Our customers believe their information is safe with us. We know their information is safe with us.”
Aditya Menon, CIO, YES BANK
YES BANK began operations in 2004, a good ten years after the last new Bank commenced operations. To take on the mammoth task of building a credible brand and bringing in customers into its portfolio, it decided to use technology as the differentiator.
In 2004, the bank decided to standardize on Microsoft Windows Server System for its IT infrastructure comprising the Core Banking solution and other critical applications such as the Treasury application, the Mutual Funds application and the Cash Management solution. Since then, the company has leveraged Microsoft technologies such as Windows Server 2003, SQL Server 2000, Internet Security and Acceleration Server 2004 to create a reliable and scalable IT infrastructure. The company has optimised its resources and reduced deployment time. The IT team has gained peace of mind due to better manageability and a secure network.


Set up in 2004, at a time when most private banks had a ten year head start into the Indian retail banking scene, YES BANK LTD Bank is India’s new age private sector bank committed to establishing a high quality, customer centric, service driven experience. The bank which has just established 18 branches will grow to 30 branches and two national service centers in the next two quarters. The bank has applied for additional licenses to double it’s presence by the end of the financial year 2007-2008.

YES BANK knew that to be successful in the Indian market, it had to get closer to customers. “We had to be more agile than our competition. We have to keep one step ahead by being ahead on the technology curve than our competition.” explains Aditya Menon, CIO, YES BANK Ltd. Therefore, at inception itself, the bank decided to use information technology as a strategic business tool for a competitive advantage,

A robust database solution was essential to support the organization’s growing number of transactions. YES BANK Ltd runs a number of online and offline applications which are database centric. “With our rapidly growing customer base and thousands of transactions every day, we really needed an efficient database to process this data faster,” says Aditya Menon, CIO.

Another key driver for was the need to provide access to the network from any branch so that a customer did not need tied down to a particular branch or location to meet his or her banking needs.

The network infrastructure had to support high availability for 24X7 operations especially for Internet banking and back office operations for phone banking services. High security was also a big consideration. As and when Microsoft posts security updates, within a very short duration there is a serious risk of virus’ attacks and/or hacking of networks. Therefore, it becomes imperative that the network is secured immediately.

Finally, the company had to remain competitive while keeping costs low. Therefore, its IT infrastructure had to reduce operational costs while providing a better turnaround time for the customer.


Says Surendra Shetty, Senior Vice President, IT Group, YES BANK, “We consulted with major global firms before selecting Windows Server System for creating our network. YES BANK LTD decided to build its entire network on Microsoft Windows Server System. “We believed that Microsoft was the ideal choice because it provided the most hassle free, easy to deploy platform for our branch server and networking infrastructure.”

YES BANK LTD’s entire technology requirements for its offices and branches across India have been outsourced to a third party vendor. Over the last 2 years, YES Bank has added 52 servers to its network. Almost all these run on Windows 2000 Server and Windows Server 2003.

Windows 2003 Server Active Directory uses a secured Domain setup where only authorized users can login to the domain and access resources available in the domain.

All users at YES BANK use Internet through ISA 2004 where authentication takes place from Windows Active Directory with single sign on for all domain users.

Another key technology in use at the organization is Windows Server Update Services, a part of Windows Server 2003. This enables the organization to quickly and effectively deploy security updates to counter vulnerabilities. “There is a very short period of time in which new virus’ spam networks, once an update is posted by Microsoft. For a bank, it becomes imperative to immediately secure the network perimeter as well as the desktops and servers. Windows SUS allows us to secure our network quickly and efficiently,” explains Mitesh Tolia, AVP, IT Security and Infrastructure, YES BANK. The bank is able to update all desktops and servers on the latest security updated within hours of these being released.

The Bank has also deployed Microsoft’s Internet Security & Acceleration (ISA) server 2004 as the firewall at the on the network as the primary proxy as this integrates with Microsoft Active Directory. It enables a standards-based secure remote access to the Internet for all employees.

The bank also uses Microsoft SQL Server 2000 for various applications. As Raghavendra Joshi, VP IT Group, YES BANK explains, “Key business applications such as Mutual Funds management system and the MIS system have been developed and deployed on SQL Server 2000 by independent software vendors.”

While the database decision was led by availability of application, the bank realizes that SQL Server has been a highly robust database that meets the organization’s every need. Therefore, when it was time to integrate seamlessly with the bank’s mutual fund application, the bank decided to go with Microsoft SQL Server 2005.

The bank has also standardized on Microsoft software for the desktop. Over 700 desktops across the head office and 18 branches run on Windows XP Professional and Microsoft Office 2003. Other Microsoft products used by employees include Microsoft Office Visio Professional 2003 and Microsoft Office Project Professional 2003.


“We have been able to present YES BANK LTD as a technology driven institution to our customers,” explains Aditya Menon, CIO.

Integrated Technology Platform Reduces Time to Deploy New Technologies

The IT infrastructure based on Microsoft software allows the company to add new solutions and third party applications with ease. Also, the infrastructure supports multiple applications and integrates well with Microsoft as well as non-Microsoft technologies.

Easier Manageability
Commenting on the manageability features of Windows Server 2003, Aditya Menon, CIO, YES BANK says, “With Active Directory and single sign on for all applications, we would have eliminated the bother of managing multiple log in information per user. In addition, the single console concept along with remote management has the potential to reduce the time spent on troubleshooting by 30 percent.”

Improved Security

Security is key to any bank’s existence. With new offerings from YES BANK LTD such as the ‘e-bay’ which offers an ATM, a kiosk as well as phone banking from a single location, it is imperative that all its systems are secure. “Our customers believe their information is safe with us,” says Aditya Menon. With Microsoft Internet and Security Server 2004 at the network perimeter, we are able to control data flow effectively. Also, the ISA 2004 firewall in combination with other products seals the network effectively.

Future Plans

The bank has beta tested Microsoft’s Live Communication Server and SharePoint Portal Server and is in the process of rolling these solutions out.

YES BANK LTD’s messaging platform which currently runs on a hosted model is also expected to be transitioned to Microsoft Exchange Server 2003. The company has recently completed a proof of concept on Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 and plans to deploy this shortly. The aim is to consolidate several small servers into a single highly reliable and scalable system which would run as multiple virtual servers. This would help the organization cut costs on hardware as well as IT administration.

YES BANK also plans to deploy additional key application such as the Cheque Truncation system on SQL 2005.

Microsoft Windows Server System

Microsoft Windows Server System is a line of integrated and manageable server software designed to reduce the complexity and cost of IT. Windows Server System enables you to spend less time and budget on managing your systems so that you can focus your resources on other priorities for you and your business.

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