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Callum Ridgway, Auger's Senior Technical Support Manager for Water Mains, first joined the team 5 years ago as an Internal Technician, having just finished school at 18. Now a member of our senior team, Callum plays a vital role in coordinating and supporting our external team of Water Mains Engineers. Callum's work ethic and commitment, combined with mentoring from our Senior Management team, meant that he quickly excelled in his initial role as an Internal Technician. Alongside this, in 2017 he began studying for his Bachelor's Degree in Building Surveying at Liverpool John Moore's University through our Auger Academy programme, providing him with the opportunity to work towards a higher education qualification whilst gaining invaluable experience in the industry. By 2019, Callum had progressed into the role of Senior Technical Support Manager. Now preparing to enter the final year of his studies, he is currently responsible for our team of 20 Water Mains Engineers, providing them wi....

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A Vulnerable Customer is someone who, due to their personal circumstances, is especially susceptible to detriment, particularly when an organisation is not acting with appropriate levels of care (FCA). When handling a claim that involves a vulnerable customer, it is important to take extra care, and where necessary, adapt standard processes in a way that accommodates the customer and their individual needs. There are 5 aspects that are essential to consider when assisting a vulnerable customer: 1. Identify During initial contact with a customer, it is important to look out for any mention or indication of vulnerability or individual requirements, as well as asking whether there are any special circumstances surrounding the claim that you should be made aware of. Any indications identified should be noted clearly and in a sensitive manner so that members of the organisation involved with the claim can take into account the individual needs and requirements of the customer. Where possibl....

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Chris Simons first joined our Claims Team as an Account Manager in September 2017. Before this, Chris began his journey into the insurance industry working as a Motor Claims Negotiator, where he effectively handled over 700 claims from first notification of loss, through to pre-litigated settlement. Throughout this role, he developed his excellent customer service skills, and built strong relationships with customers and clients alike. Chris has also worked for the Christian Union where he trained and equipped university students to fulfil the vision of the organisation. He provided mentoring and coaching to individuals and groups, and executed educational seminars and workshops. His ability to provide a first class service, along with successfully coordinating, influencing and guiding a team made him an excellent candidate to join our Claims Team.  Having become a Business Improvement Officer here at Auger in December 2019, Chris now mentors and guides our claims team, and provides th....

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The effects of a turbulent have made this Mental Health Awareness Week even more important. Whilst we have long been supporters of mental health initiatives within our organisation and local community, we are always looking for ways we can do more to help. To ensure our team are prioritising their mental and physical well-being, we have this year implemented a comprehensive health plan for all employees. Amongst its many benefits, this package provides access to a 24hr GP phoneline, face-to-face counselling or CBT sessions, and a 24hr advice line providing support with legal, financial and well-being concerns, in addition to cover for a host of other consultations or treatments (find out more here). The plan automatically provides cover for employees' children, as well as the option to add a partner, or increase the level of coverage easily. Our aim is to provide all at Auger with peace of mind that their family can access the help they need, when they need it. We are committed to enco....

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Our employees' development is our passion; this lead us to establish our Auger Academy in 2016 to train the next generation of Auger engineers. Our Academy programme benefits both our new recruits and long-term employees at Auger HQ and in the field by offering wide-ranging opportunities for professional development, further education and career progression. This includes welcoming those who have no skills or previous experience in our industry and providing the training required to excel. New engineers joining our Auger Academy are partnered with two senior members of our team in their location, who are on hand to provide support, guidance and mentoring throughout the training period. Using our bespoke training platform, 'The Hub', our senior trainers can sign off our new starter's progress as they move through the programme from wherever they are in the UK, meaning our external operations team are always kept up to date. 'The Hub' also allows our new recruits to view their progress a....

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We are delighted to have been awarded the Investors in People Gold Accreditation in January 2020, placing us in the top 18% of accredited organisations in the UK when it comes to our approach to leading, developing and caring for our people. In the 18 months since this achievement, we have continued to focus on strengthening our offering, engaging with our team and investing in their success, with the aim of being able to achieve the Platinum accreditation in the coming years. To ensure all of our people are involved in and inspired by our vision and values, we have expanded our employee engagement team, whose role is to focus on enhancing employee culture through regular and transparent two-way communication regarding how we can make Auger a great place to thrive. We have reinforced our review process, ensuring all employees undertake a face-to-face review with their line manager every 6 months, with an additional formal opportunity to provide feedback around how we can better support....

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Will Brewster, Auger's External Operations Manager, first joined us in 2016 as a part-time Internal Technician alongside studying for his Chemistry Degree at the University of Loughborough. Having become a Technical Team Leader in July 2019, he now heads our team of Internal Technicians and on-site Investigation Engineers. Will's focus is on mentoring both of these teams to help Auger provide a high-quality, same-day reporting service to our customers and clients for drainage, subsidence and off-mains claims. For our teams on site, this means providing them with support to identify the source of our customer's problem and helping them to overcome any challenges in achieving this. For our in-house technical experts, Will is on hand to provide guidance on assessing claim liability and proposing the right solution for all parties. He takes pride in ensuring our reports always point our customers in the right direction in terms of next steps to resolve their issue, whether they are covered....

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20 years ago, in April 2001, Iain Jones became one of the first members of our external engineering team, working on subsidence site investigations as part of a team of only 3 based solely in the North West. Iain is now our longest serving engineer, and has been the backbone of our now nationwide workforce for the past two decades.  Throughout his Auger career, Iain has often taken a leading role in representing Auger on camera. In 2010, he starred in multiple episodes of Channel 4's 'Help My House is Falling Down', presented by Sarah Beeney, carrying out drainage investigations at properties experiencing subsidence issues and explaining his conclusions. In 2013, Iain was the focus of a case study video by Magicomm about Auger's industry-first adoption of their 'digital pen' solution to allow for the instant upload of data from site to our technical team. Having been the first to be promoted to the position of Senior Engineer, and appointed as our first ever External Trainer in 2017, I....

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WEB Merseyside began as a small support group run by local women, since becoming an established charity providing vital services across our community. Their mission is to support women, men and children with complex needs in building the confidence to cope with life through personal growth and skills development; at their core is the commitment to providing these services in a non-judgemental and safe environment where people can share their experiences and thoughts. We are proud to have supported WEB over the past decade as we passionately believe the work they do is paramount in providing a strong foundation for vulnerable people in our local community. Aside from donating a portion of our profit each month to help with ongoing staffing and service provision, our whole workforce have supported WEB's work through regular fundraising activities and voluntary work over the last 9 years; WEB Manager Bernie King commented: "Auger have been an absolute lifeline, enabling us to keep our sta....

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As the COVID-19 vaccine rolls out here in the UK, there is a light at the end of the tunnel for us following this difficult year, with over 10% of our Auger workforce already having been vaccinated. Unfortunately, in other parts of the world, people are not in such a fortunate position, with the vaccine not expected to reach even the most vulnerable for many months. These countries are therefore fighting the second wave of the pandemic without the most basic essentials needed to help healthcare workers to protect themselves whilst they wait for vaccines to arrive. The Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine started the #BumpItForward campaign to help frontline healthcare workers in African countries carry out their essential activities safely until the vaccine reaches them, by providing PPE and other vital equipment and supplies. They are asking that companies, where they can afford to, to donate the equivalent cost of a COVID-19 vaccine (£25) for each of their employees. Auger are pleas....

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Auger's Internal Operations Manager, Louise Chadwick, joined us as a claims handler 10 years ago and has since worked her way through the ranks to her current position heading up our claims area.  Louise's previous experience of dealing with challenging customers in a high-pressured environment meant that she excelled in the claims handling role from day one. In 2014, she took on the role of Team Leader and began to mentor some of her less experienced colleagues. She has held her current position as Internal Operations Manager for the past 4 years, in which time she has helped to drive our NPS score to an industry-leading 80 and vastly improve our customer journey. Louise is a driver of innovation when it comes to our service. One of her first projects focussed on incorporating water supply pipe investigation and repair into our service; in the first instance, Louise utilised skills developed through her CIPS qualification to establish a nationwide supply chain, later converting this i....

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Here at Auger, over 50% of our senior team and over 60% of our junior management and team leaders are female. We are surrounded by inspirational women, and in light of International Women's Day we thought it appropriate to spotlight a few.   Louise Chadwick has been a part of the Auger team for nearly 10 years; beginning as a claims handler, she has worked her way up to her current role as Internal Operations manager, showing incredible dedication since day one. Having already nurtured and developed a strong department who are at the forefront of delivering our first-class service, Louise continues to strive daily for improvements that will benefit both our customers and her team. Chief amongst her achievements, Louise developed our service to include water claims, establishing a nationwide supply chain and later working to bring this into the direct labour model we use today. In addition to having acted as a mentor to several of our internal staff, Louise is a mentor for The Girls' Ne....

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For Auger, this month has marked our 25th anniversary – and we have been reminding ourselves of why we are doing this and our purpose. We have grown and built a team of highly-skilled people, with unrivalled technology and service that is unparalleled in the industry of drainage and water mains services. With more than 90 engineers, we reach communities far and wide but our guiding principles remain the same. To serve our customers with the service and delivery they deserve when something goes wrong. Our industry-leading technology including bespoke software tools and apps allows engineers to file information and reports quickly and easily from wherever they are in the UK. At our headquarters in Wallasey, we have established our own training Academy to make sure we train our new recruits in the ‘Auger way’. They all receive training however qualified they already are. This all adds up to a consistently high level of service across the UK. And for our insurer clients handling these cla....

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Smart home technology is increasingly helping consumers monitor and anticipate problems around the home and escape of water is one of those worrying issues. Leakbot is one of the best examples of this technology that we’ve seen and certainly the best packaged and branded solution that is currently available. Many of the alternatives that are marketed as ‘smart’ technology that detect leaks are comparatively primitive in their design, function and practicality. Solutions are typically white plastic devices placed on the floor close to pipes or outlets that have a simple sensor that can detect if water comes into contact with it – not exactly ground-breaking. Where the Leakbot could do more in the future is to take things a step further and shut off the water supply. In the past we’ve been critical of insurance companies failing to recognise the value that smart home technology can have in securing and protecting our most valuable asset. Pro-active security systems with smart cameras tha....

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We have recently called for an improvement in the way the principles of GDPR are implemented across the insurance industry almost a year after its introduction. Whilst often viewed as complex subject with a number of grey areas, we should not lose sight of the most important point in looking after the data that is provided in good faith by our clients and customers. Simply put, this is their personal data, they own it and we as data processors and controllers are merely custodians. There was great awareness of GDPR prior to its introduction in May 2018 and there was little excuse for businesses not to have processes in place that were well established and observed before its introduction as a formal policy. Hand in glove with these policies comes the need to upgrade systems which have the ability to comply with some of the more basic principles of GDPR. One of which is to only share and disclose essential information. In our experience a lot of legacy systems churn out one size fits al....

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Auger is proud to have been named Claims Innovation of the Year – Outsourced Partner at the Insurance Post Claims Awards. The category called for demonstration of an innovative response to a specified and identified need within the claims chain, from new technology investments and processes to a new service or approach. The awards, which celebrate excellence in claims, saw Auger overcome competition from companies including DWF Law, Crawford & Company and NetWatch Global to take the prestigious accolade. The ceremony was attended by over 400 industry professionals at The Brewery in London.

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Auger has achieved the ‘gold standard’ in UK health and safety management after developing its IT systems and a number of apps to support the quality of information gathering for its staff and customers. The company - serving the insurance industry for drainage and water mains claims across the UK - successfully came through a rigorous audit of its processes under the ISO 45001 occupational health and safety management system. The standard specifies requirements for an occupational health and safety management system to enable organisations to provide safe and healthy workplaces by preventing work-related injury and ill health, as well as proactively improving its performance. Sharon Kaye, Auger business process manager who led the project, said: “This is something we have been working on for some time so to gain the accreditation at this level is a credit to all of our employees. We all want to work in an environment where we feel safe, and the wellbeing of our staff is a priority for....

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Auger is calling for increased vigilance of the policies of GDPR across the industry almost a year after its introduction. Neil Wilks, Head of Tech for Auger, said: “Customer data should be fully protected, but the ability to comply with some of the more basic principles of GDPR are often compromised by legacy systems. “These systems churn out one size fits all instructions which often contain far more information than the recipient requires. “At a high level there is a strong commitment driven by Information Security compliance to build sophisticated IT infrastructures and systems which have the appropriate defence mechanisms to minimise the risk of data breaches and to ensure that we as supply partners are held to high standards in this regards. “In our experience it falls down at an operational level where claims and supply chain managers focus on doing whatever they can to encourage their teams to use self-service tools often at the expense of unwittingly relaxing security requirem....

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 Auger has further grown its UK network with the appointment of nine more recruits. The new employees include six engineers, taking the dedicated engineering network to more than 80 with a data-driven approach and cutting-edge technology in support of drainage and water mains claims. As part of its growth, the new recruits will be put through the Auger Academy where they will be trained in the relevant skills in engineering, account management and technology. Nicola Lyon, head of recruitment and people development at Auger, said: “We’re finding the Academy to be hugely beneficial as we expand further. This means we can train our new employees in the skills they need in the same way and provide a consistent high level of service our clients have come to expect wherever they are.” Training under the Academy includes partnering engineers with senior staff. This is supported by industry-leading technology including bespoke software tools and apps which allow staff to file information and r....

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Expanding tech specialist for the insurance industry Auger has clinched two awards at the Customer Claims Excellence Awards. The leader in drainage and water mains claims scooped a Highly Commended in both the categories for Best Customer Service Product for Customer and the Best New Business Initiative. The customer service award demonstrated the lengths the company goes to for its customers and how it uses its cutting edge IT for the benefit of its customers with swift, efficient solutions through the process. In the Best New Business Initiative category, Auger related the development of a new leak repair system for water supply pipes, cutting out disruption and time in unnecessary excavations in homes and on land near consumer and commercial premises.

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Expanding tech specialist for the insurance industry Auger has launched a game-changing product in partnership with innovations company Qinov8 to revolutionise the market in water leaks across the UK. The new Aquapea leak repair system for water supply pipes is already having widespread success in its initial phase of use, cutting out disruption and time in unnecessary excavations in homes and on land near consumer and commercial premises. Internal leaks and escape of water clams cost UK insurers an estimated £3.9m every day. There were more than 10,000 water supply pipe claims costing insurers more than £13m in 2018. The system uses an advanced polymer material the size of a pea, which is introduced into the water supply pipe at an external meter chamber and, with the internal stop tap turned off, the polymer is drawn to the location of the leak. The flow of water carries the Aquapea along the inside of the pipe, bonding to the pipe at the position of the leak and curing within 20 min....

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Specialist for the UK insurance industry Auger has come up with the answer to delivering practical training for its engineers – at its own headquarters. By using land around its own offices, the leader in drainage and water mains claims for the UK can put new and existing engineering staff through their paces in every practical way through the extension of its academy. With a focus on working safely and encouraging engineering excellence, the training ground adjacent to Auger’s head office in Wallasey, Wirral provides training managers Iain Jones and Dave Rogers with the space to develop the workforce. Detecting services, undertaking safe excavations, moling new water mains and operating the latest CCTV drainage cameras are amongst the many skills and competencies they are developing. Iain said: “There’s nothing like getting your hands on this equipment and trying it for yourself. This allows us to conduct the technical training in the office and the practical training outside in a con....

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As we grow and develop our network of more than 90 engineers serving the insurance industry across the UK, we don’t want to lose sight of our most important goal – customer service. Our engineers in drainage, water mains and subsidence claims services are the best, but we can’t rest on our laurels and we strive to continually improve our levels of service through training and development. To that end, we’ve committed to running practical training on site to support the theory at the Auger Academy. Led by trainers Iain Jones and Dave Rogers, this will mean all of our engineers are learning and developing the skills of their trade. With an increasing demand for young – and older – people with skills in engineering, we believe this will help bridge any gaps they may have and is a sign of our commitment to our own skills base at Auger. Entry-level engineers cover skills including drainage and subsidence investigation, on-site safety, water mains drainage and drain repair with opportunities....

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Specialist for the UK insurance industry Auger has appointed Iain Jones to lead a new training initiative for its growing team of engineers. Auger’s longest-serving engineer at 17 years, Iain has become the lead trainer for a range of practical as well as theory and technical skills which can all be conducted on site at the company’s headquarters. Auger – which has expanded its national team to more than 70 engineers – has developed its own dedicated Academy to train engineers in drainage and water mains claims services. Iain said: “Having a dedicated site for practical training provides the scope to develop the technical skills which – coupled with first class premises to teach the theory behind it – enables us to deliver a level of training and development that is unrivalled in this industry. “The quality of training we can offer means all of our engineers are working to a consistently high level and achieving best practice for our customers.” Auger is developing the area around its ....

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The start of another year is special this time round for Auger. It’s our 25th anniversary and we want to share the experience with our staff and partners who have helped build the business into what it is today. We are planning to celebrate our achievements – without resting on our laurels – and mark our 25th anniversary in a variety of ways so you’ll see and hear more from us as the year unfolds. From humble beginnings with just a handful of us, we’ve grown into the leading provider of water mains and drainage services for the insurance industry across the UK, with more than 120 staff. Whether it’s repairing a defective drain, developing cutting edge technology to streamline the claims process or delivering the best customer service in the industry, we now have the level of skills which are unequalled. Indeed, our dedicated labour force of skilled engineers on the road means we can offer the same consistent high level of service wherever we are in the UK. At our headquarters at Wallas....

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Employees at the Wallasey-based insurance supplier Auger are reaping the rewards of the company’s profit-sharing scheme as they celebrate its best-ever year. All employees have taken home four figure bonuses equating to between 7.5 per cent and 10 per cent of their salaries, just in time for Christmas. The specialist insurance supplier for drainage and water pipe claims have posted a record-breaking performance as the company continues to grow and take on new Insurance clients. Dave Brewster, managing director of Auger, said: “We have always shared our profits with the staff and this year I am delighted to be able to share our record performance with this exceptional team. “We always go the extra mile for our customers I’d really like to thank all of the staff for their efforts, and one way of making sure their work doesn’t go unnoticed is to reward them financially.” As well as attractive salary packages and a profit share bonus, the benefits of working for the fastest growing drainag....

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Specialist for the insurance industry Auger says the sector is moving so rapidly that only those who are developing new skills around tech now will be able to manage the pace and scale of change for the future. Skills in data manipulation and analysis, software development and softer skills in customer service will be the cornerstone of any business in the sector, says Head of Tech and Digital Neil Wilks. He said: “The shortage of the relevant skilled people now will leave many businesses behind the pace of change very quickly as the industry catches up with technology and the profile of many roles in the industry change to adapt to the digital revolution. “We employ a diverse range of people including engineers on the road, claims handlers, IT developers, HR experts and accountants but the one thing they all have in common is the need to change and upskill. In all positions we’re looking for people who are comfortable working with technology and have the ability to work with data. “As....

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  We take great pride at Auger that we have a focus for all of our training and knowledge development – the Auger Academy. However, one thing is clear. This learning and development hub is not just a physical part of our business. It’s a way of thinking and a way of doing things. It is the people and their drive, ideas and innovation that makes it what it is today. We are seeing the fruits of the Academy coming through as engineers develop from entry-level into lead engineers, and school leavers and graduates progress through technical, finance and IT teams. No matter what level or role, when you join Auger you gain entry into this experience. For engineers, you will learn how to use industry-leading technology including bespoke software tools and apps which allow staff to access information quickly and easily and send all their information back directly from site wherever they are in the UK. The equipment used by our engineers is unequalled in the industry no matter what their experti....

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Chris Cowen, client relationship manager at Auger, tech specialists for the UK insurance sector in drainage and water mains claims, said: ”Subsidence claims are an insurance category that is subject to peaks and troughs and it is not unusual for example, for volumes to double in September, October and November following a hot summer. “The spring and summer of 2018 has been unusually hot and dry and has resulted in a surge of subsidence claims. With volumes more than four times the average and claims seeming to peak a couple of months earlier, it has proved a challenging time for those in the industry. It is not viable for adjusters and specialist suppliers to have sufficient resource permanently in place for ‘event years’, and with the last being in 2003 the industry has lost capacity and expertise. The answer has to be flexibility and the ability to react quickly. “At Auger, we have a background in specialist subsidence investigation dating back over 20 years. We are able to react to ....

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Auger is expanding its UK network resource with the appointment of 14 more recruits. To meet increasing demands for its services, the growing business has appointed 10 new engineers and four other head-office staff as part of its UK-wide offer serving the UK insurance industry in drainage and water mains claims. As part of its growth, the 124-strong Auger team has created its own Academy to train and develop employees with the relevant skills in engineering, account management and technology. Nicola Lyon, head of recruitment and people development at Auger, said: “As we grow our services, so we need to recruit and train the best people. “With a commitment to training, our own Academy means we can train engineers and other head office staff in best practice across all the skills and disciplines of our service. “Ultimately, this leads to the best customer service and is the benchmark of how we measure ourselves. “Whilst we train and develop our own employees, we also encourage them to de....

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Insurers increasingly look to their supply chain partners to take more ownership of the processes involved to save time and money. As insurers align their procurement and supply chain management they are increasingly aware that the more hand-offs there are in a claim, complaints and costs increase exponentially. Relationships with suppliers offering a direct labour model can demonstrate a number of advantages including cost control. At Auger, we strongly believe that the direct labour model and claim ‘ownership’ not only add efficiencies in the process but also offer two pillars of great customer service. Our engineers are all employed directly by us, working to our own schedules, liaising through an account manager at headquarters while keeping the customer updated. To ensure they are delivering a consistent service, they are trained in the same way at the Auger Academy in all technical matters. They report back to head office in the same way and the customer will receive updates on t....

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Some 27 per cent of all businesses in the UK are linked to engineering and accounts for 23 per cent of the UK’s total turnover. So why can’t we find the young people to fill vacancies in engineering? It may be that engineering is not seen as glamorous or as appealing as working on a computer or in the new digital industries which have sprung up around the internet-related boom. At Auger, we are constantly looking for engineers to help develop our network of support for our insurer clients in drainage and water mains claims across the UK. In fact, engineering at Auger offers a career not just for a year or two but for the long-term. Our engineers receive technical training, on-the-job training – and learn how to work with their colleagues and the public as our customers. These are skills they will never forget. We are proud of our engineers. They are our ambassadors on the ground, and they are constantly being praised in feedback when a repair or project is complete. So why is it that y....

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In the headlong rush to meet customer demands, hit financial targets and keep pace with technology, businesses can be in danger of ignoring the most important asset they have for growth and innovation. Their people. At Auger, we put people at the centre of our business. They are not only employees, they are ambassadors whether they are claims handlers making daily phone calls from head office or engineers moving about the UK. We are problem-solvers. From receiving a case, to clarifying the claim and finding the solution. Our engineers, equipped with their liveried vehicles and apps to keep them on schedule, answer calls and find a way around problems for our customers every day. This can be challenging, and to ensure they have the knowledge and the capability needed, we invest time in developing their skills. This means ongoing structured training across the board for all staff leading to industry-leading competencies. Training includes assistant engineers being initially partnered in ....

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Specialist for the insurance industry Auger has seen a fresh group of 12 staff graduate through its industry-leading academy. The company has launched its own Auger Academy aimed at supporting and developing both the company’s external engineering team based across the UK and internal staff at head office. The growing business – serving the UK insurance industry in drainage and water mains services – has made a number of appointments in the last 12 months as part of an expansion programme and is still recruiting to meet continuing demand from clients. Training under the academy includes partnering engineers with senior staff and offering industry-specific courses. This is supported by bespoke software tools and apps which allow staff to file information and reports quickly and easily from wherever they are in the UK. Qualifying to full drain-repair engineers are Glen Bott, Jason Loveland, Darren Cornick and Brian Kitt. Thomas Morgan, Daniel Page and Graeme Ferguson are now water mains....

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Insurers looking at ways to innovate and speed up the claims process would do well to examine how they handle the first point of contact with customers. First Notification of Loss is arguably the most important contact insurers will have with their customers. This call offers an opportunity to explain the process and set expectation. More importantly, it offers a chance to listen to a customer’s needs, and give assurances that there are simple solutions to their issue. Likewise, the claims journey is one of the few opportunities for a customer to experience an insurer’s service delivery and discover what they have actually purchased with their policy. We know that one size doesn’t fit all, but a seamless, simple process is vital to customer retention. Why is it then that insurers often over-complicate this early part of the process? Certainly, it’s necessary to go through the data protection process, confirm cover and set up a claim – but this shouldn’t take more than a few minutes. Un....

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Specialist for  insurance industry Auger is urging insurers to look at new ways of handling the claims process at the first point of contact. Chris Cowen, client relationship manager at the Wallasey-based provider of drainage and water mains services, reports that the First Notification of Loss is arguably the most important contact an insurer will have with a customer. He warns that many insurers over-complicate the early part of the claims process, with often inexperienced handlers expected to have discussions over the detail of a complicated claims category. Cowen is urging insurers to simplify the process, and consider letting trusted supply partners take on such responsibilities. He explained: “The First Notification of Loss call gives insurers an opportunity to explain the process and set expectations. “More importantly, it offers a chance to listen to a customer’s needs, and give assurances that there are solutions to their issue. “The claims journey is one of the few opportunit....

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Market-leading specialist for the insurance industry, Auger, has employed two new IT developers as the company continues to expand its technology services. Luke Varley, junior developer, and Jake Walker, apprentice developer, join the Auger team in Wallasey, Wirral, to focus on a range of internal and external projects. These will include meeting the demands of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR). Auger currently operates its own bespoke IT software, Clarity Suite, which helps supply customers with information and transparency, helps the insurer with processes and speeds up the insurance process for all involved. The suite includes the Atom software used by Auger’s engineers to communicate with their office-based counterparts. Jake is the first apprentice to be appointed under the Auger Academy, established last year to improve the skills of its workforce and formalise its training processes. Neil Wilks, head of technology and finance at Auger, said: “Luke and Jake join Auge....

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A big-hearted group of friends pulled together to raise funds to help a Wirral mum suffering from a brain tumour. Lynn Ridgway’s son Callum, who works as an internal technician at local business Auger, based in Wallasey, raised more than £8,500 for Brian Tumour Research after shaving his head. Lynn, of Upton, was diagnosed with a benign Meningioma, one of 120 types of brain tumour. Due to the positioning of the brain tumour, it is inoperable and therefore she will have to undertake six weeks of intensive radio therapy. A group of Callum’s friends, including brother Andy, and Will Brewster – son of Auger managing director Dave – also joined in with the charity gesture. The head shave took place at Caldy Rugby Club in West Kirby where Lynn is vice chairwoman. Friends and family of the Ridgways gathered for the event, taking time to travel from across the UK. Callum said: “When we found out that mum had a benign brain tumour we wanted to do something to help. “The side effects of mum’s tr....

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Auger, the drainage and water mains expert for the insurance industry, has been recognised by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) for the quality of its vehicle fleet safety. The growing business has received the Gold Fleet Safety Award as part of the internationally-recognised RoSPA Health and Safety Awards. The award comes after the business made a number of changes to the way it operated its fleet, restructuring its internal team, developing bespoke software and apps, and updating its policies and bonus scheme to take into account safe driving. Sharon Kaye, business process and HR manager for Wallasey-based Auger, said the changes also reflected consultations with drivers themselves. She explained: “As a company which employs a team of engineers working around the UK and spending significant time on the road, it is important that our fleet performance and safety processes are second to none. “As we have grown as a business we have worked extremely hard to raise....

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Tech-hungry Millennials have been investing in smart tech devices to protect their homes for some years now without the commitment being reflected in their insurance premiums. A survey commissioned by Auger of 2,000 18-34-year-olds across the UK concluded that they have simply had enough, and won’t be investing any further until they can see the benefits. Half of those questioned said there are no incentives to invest further in technology, with more women - 53 per cent than men - 43 per cent – voting with their feet against further commitment in this area of their budget. Technology is beginning to play more of a role in home security than ever before. Examples include  machine learning and smart cameras which can distinguish between pets and people when triggering motion detectors, connected lighting systems and smoke detectors which test themselves. The frustration being voiced by the younger home owners of today - and tomorrow – in the recent survey seems to offer insurers an oppor....

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Despite their obsession with tech, half of savvy Millennials questioned in a survey from insurance tech specialist Auger said they won’t invest in smart devices to protect their home because there are no benefits from providers. Technology is beginning to play more of a role in home security than ever before – machine learning and smart cameras which can distinguish between pets and people when triggering motion detectors; connected lighting systems and smoke detectors which test themselves are just a few examples of the latest developments. In the survey of 2,000 Millennials aged 18-34 across the UK, some 50 per cent of those questioned said there is no benefit to invest in technology for increased security, with more women (53 per cent) than men (43 per cent) not using smart tech. Only 15 per cent of those questioned said they would invest and wanted to do everything they could to make their homes safer despite the lack of incentives from the insurance industry. But the survey from i....

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The cost of ‘escape of water’ claims is currently estimated at more than £2.5million every day and is set to become the single highest claim value category of insurance. So do we understand why, and can the insurance industry do anything about it as we head into a tangle of claims associated with leaks in all their various forms? The rise in internal leaks can be tracked against the corresponding increase in our changing lifestyles and the sheer amount of water we use for a diverse range of devices. Even the average homeowner has more complex plumbing in the house serving washing machines and dishwashers, and will often have additional cloak rooms and en-suites. At the same time, old pipework and a legacy of an ageing housing stock which has not always been maintained with new materials has contributed to the issue, and there are still an estimated 10 million homes in the UK with lead water supply pipes. The most common areas of damage are halls and landings which are adjacent to the “....

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Drainage and Water mains experts for the insurance industry, Auger, has appointed a specialist with 35 years’ experience to lead new business development as the company plans further expansion. Pete Lawson joins the team at the Wallasey-based company which serves the insurance industry for drainage and water mains claims across the UK, as new business development manager. He joins Auger following a career in the insurance sector spanning more than three decades, most recently working for Preston-based Surface Medic. Pete started his career as a broker, moving into promoting services to the insurance sector. In his new role he will lead new business activity for the growing company, working alongside Chris Cowen, Auger’s client relationship manager. Auger works with major insurers and has experienced significant growth over the last 12 months, moving into new, expanded headquarters and recruiting a number of engineers and office staff. It has been nominated for a number of awards includ....

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Water mains tech specialist Auger says the insurance industry must invest to fight the rising cost of ‘escape of water’ claims currently running at more than £2.5million every day and rising. Fast becoming the highest value category of insurance claims, this issue deserves attention with expertise and technology, says Auger. Chris Cowen, Client Relationship Manager for Auger, said: “We need to understand why it is happening and address it. Investigation and reinstatement of leak detection claims are increasing for a number of reasons as our lifestyles have changed. “Pipes are no longer exposed in buildings, and are either boxed-in or encased behind floor surfaces or wall finishes. Homes now have more expensive finishes and will usually have fully-fitted kitchens and bathrooms. Most houses also have much more internal plumbing, including multiple bathrooms, en-suites and separate utility rooms. “We often see underfloor heating, integrated plumbing and electrical appliances, and technolo....

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Market-leading tech specialist for the insurance industry Auger is employing 18 new engineers as the company continues to expand. Auger, based in Wallasey, Wirral, has recruited the new staff to grow its UK-wide engineering team to 80 members of staff. The company has appointed more than 30 new employees, including both office and site-based staff, from engineers to assistant engineers and account managers to create an expanded direct labour force over the last 12 months. Earlier this year, the company launched the Auger Academy to formalise the training given to its new and existing engineers in drainage and water supply for the insurance industry. The training includes assistant engineers partnering with two ‘buddies’ – senior staff – and taking industry-specific courses in topics including health and safety, confined space, patch lining, water hygiene, moling and ground scanning. Internal staff also have the option to take courses in areas including management. Nicola Lyon, head of ....

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Auger’s team is proud to have scooped the best customer service at the LV= General Insurance Claims Partner Awards. LV= are the ‘Which’ Insurance provider of the Year 2017. With customer satisfaction levels running at 99 per cent, Auger satisfied the LV judging team which was looking for ‘world-class customer satisfaction and retention results.' LV’s Claims Director Martin Milliner told the audience at the awards ceremony that they don’t have any good suppliers “only great ones.” Rachel Scarrett, Head of GI Supplier Management at LV who handed out the award to Auger said that out of its 500 excellent suppliers, one stood out for outstanding customer service - and that was Auger. Our commitment to customer service has included: Our cutting edge IT allows site information to be transferred in real time. This enables our technical team to produce a comprehensive report on liability within four hours of finishing on site in 95 per cent of cases. This and other initiatives has reduced clai....

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 The advent of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has the capacity to create chaos through the insurance industry supply chain on the scale of PPI, according to a leading tech company serving the insurance industry. Neil Wilks, Head of Technology at Auger - a leading independent specialist for drainage and water mains claims - said those companies or individuals who suspect insurance companies may be storing or processing data illegally will almost certainly be encouraged to pursue a claim much in the same way as PPI claims mushroomed. He said: “The additional issue here for insurers is the approved supplier’s delivery model. Although many insurers and adjusters will look at the governance surrounding sub-contractors, they also need to consider the implications of the data security of smaller local or regional suppliers employed by the main contractor (known as sub-processors) further down the line who may not have the same processes in place. “For the insurance industry, GD....

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Market-leading drainage and water supply specialist for the insurance industry, Auger, is employing 12 new engineers as the company continues to expand. The company, based in Wallasey, Wirral has recruited the new staff to grow its UK-wide engineering team to more than 70. Over the last 12 months, Auger has appointed more than 25 new employees, including both office and site-based staff, from engineers to assistant engineers and account managers to create an expanded direct labour force. Auger is still recruiting, and further announcements are expected to be made later in the year. Earlier this year, the company launched the Auger Academy to formalise the training given to its new and existing engineers. The training includes assistant engineers partnering with two ‘buddies’ – senior staff – and taking industry-specific courses in topics including health and safety, confined space, patch lining, water hygiene, moling and ground scanning. Internal staff also have the option to take cour....

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The insurance industry will need to streamline its processes to face the challenge of GDPR when it comes into effect in May. Neil Wilks, Head of Technology at Auger said GDPR allows for collective enforcement of individuals rights, but is less beneficial for insurers. He went on: “The new GDPR provides a potential avenue for a collective enforcement of rights against giants of industry and tech that would currently be prohibitive for individuals to pursue alone. This is great news for customers but less so for large insurers who may have been able to lever their legal expertise in a typical David versus Goliath scenario. “A data subject, typically the customer, should be engaged in an ongoing manner to ensure their continued consent for a company to process their data as opposed to a ‘smash-and-grab’ where they obtain consent up front when a service provider has more leverage over the customer and then uses that consent to process their data indefinitely.” Wilks said that from an insur....

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 Engineers at market-leading drainage and water supply specialist Auger are seeing the benefits from a newly-launched training ‘academy.’ The Auger Academy is a specialist internal apprenticeship scheme aimed at supporting and developing the company’s external engineering team, and will help new staff and assistant engineers as they go through the training required to become lead engineers. Auger, based in Wallasey, Wirral, employs more than 100 staff including 60 highly-qualified engineers on the road across the UK. Over the last 12 months, Auger has appointed more than 20 new employees, including both office and site-based staff, from engineers to assistant engineers and account managers. The company is also actively recruiting for additional external engineers – currently an additional seven are due to join in February. The training includes assistant engineers partnering with two ‘buddies’ – senior staff – and taking industry-specific courses in topics including health and safety, ....

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The Net Promoter Score (NPS) has long been a global benchmark for customer feedback. It lets us know how happy customers are with our businesses through a scoring system that simply reflects how likely they are to recommend the company to others. This can then be used to compare business across multiple sectors. Ignoring the passives or mid-range numbers, NPS is calculated as a percentage of Promoter scores minus the percentage of Detractor scores, giving a rating between -100 and +100. In a recent survey M&S Food scored 31 and Apple computers 28, whilst easyjet and Royal Bank of Scotland are languishing at minus 16 and at minus 20 respectively. Auger currently enjoy an NPS of 78 against an average for the insurance industry as a whole standing at 51. The insurance sector has experienced a 9.9 point overall drop in NPS over the last 12 months, suggesting it is becoming harder for insurance organisations to earn customer endorsement. Customers are now expecting more because of what ....

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As we rapidly progress technology options for our customers in the insurance industry, we should not lose sight of their own requirements. To keep it personal and relevant to them. Just because the industry is adding more options and channels for our customers, it shouldn’t neglect them or leave some of them behind. Our recent survey highlights the wishes of the customer, who put speaking to someone down the phone - or resolving their claim through instant chat if they are younger - at the top of their preferences. In our survey of 2,000 consumers across the UK, the preference for speaking to someone on the phone when making an insurance claim rose with age from 37 per cent of 18-24s up to 76 per cent for the 65s and over. Of the younger generation, 64 per cent of 18-24 year-olds and 60 per cent of 25-34 year-olds said they preferred using instant chat, logging onto a website or using a mobile app. Yet the one central theme shining through – even when using online chat – was the person....

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Despite the growth of technology at every turn, we still want to speak to someone when it comes to making an insurance claim – especially if you live in Scotland. The overwhelming demand from those questioned in a survey about how they would prefer to interact with their insurer was to speak to someone over the phone. In Scotland, the figure rose to more than 60 per cent, while in London, the demand to speak to someone over a claim fell to 41 per cent, according to the survey of 2,000 people run by Auger, the independent specialist serving the insurance industry for drainage and water mains. David Brewster, managing director of Auger, said: “One of the main challenges of adopting new and emerging technology is to retain the personal aspect. If a service is automated or using AI then it still needs to retain the human element which this research has shown is important to customers. It’s not enough to provide the answer in an automated manner, it needs to be done with personality. “The i....

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When it comes to making an insurance claim, savvy Millenials want a touch of personal contact with all the benefits of new technology. The demand from 18-34 year-olds is for an array of technology, mostly online chat with its convenient personal touch, according to a survey from Auger, the leading independent specialist serving the insurance industry for drainage and water mains claims. Of those questioned, 64 per cent of 18-24 year-olds said they preferred using technology, with online chat most popular (31 per cent), logging onto a website (17 per cent) or using a mobile app (14 per cent). The demand for tech from 25-34 year-olds was much the same - standing at a total of 60 per cent of those questioned - with online chat again the most in demand (29 per cent) followed by a website (18 per cent) and use of a mobile app (13 per cent). In the survey of 2,000 consumers across the UK, the preference for speaking to someone on the phone when making an insurance claim rose with age from 37....

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In committing to technology our aim is simple. To support the customer, and the insurer. Through our Clarity suite of apps, we are making a difference, providing them with information and transparency. For years we have seen at first-hand, and heard from customers and other stakeholders, a number of key problems the insurance industry faces including complex processes, long claims durations and a lack of transparency when it comes to customer claims. Simply put, Clarity is a suite of mobile and digital applications for clients, customers, a national team of field engineers and internal operations. In the field of water mains and drainage, customers want a quick and efficient repair on a day and time to suit them. Most of the time customers simply want to know what is happening and when and their options from the service experts. Gravity, a customer app with an Uber-style tracking of an engineer’s journey, allows progress to be followed in real time on a map, with notifications and an u....

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 Technology created by market-leading drainage and water supply pipe specialist Auger has been highly commended in a top insurance industry award. The Clarity suite was shortlisted for the Wireless Wizard Award – the best business project dependent on mobile technology – as part of the Digital and InsurTech Awards 2017. The awards are designed to showcase the way the insurance sector develops new ways to harness technology and create innovative methods to drive business processes forward. Auger, based in the Wirral and serving the insurance sector nationwide, created Clarity as a suite of mobile and digital applications for clients, customers, its team of field engineers and internal operations staff. It is estimated that the software has helped to reduce claim duration by 40 per cent. Neil Wilks, head of technology and finance at Auger, said: “Clarity was a response to changing requirements across the insurance sector, and helps supply customers with information and transparency, help....

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Auger, the market-leading independent drainage and water supply pipe specialist, based on the Wirral, has taken on a team of new employees, expanding every part of the business. The Wallasey company, which serves the UK-wide insurance industry, has made significant investment into its business in recent months, with a move to a new £1.2million headquarters. Now Auger has announced it has taken on eight new staff, both office and site-based, to continue its expansion plans. It is also currently recruiting for an additional 11 external engineers. Four water mains engineers have been recruited; Carl Clare, Stephen Shaw, Mark Shead and Peter Clark. Adam Lofthouse also joins as an assistant water mains engineer, with Alex Smith as an internal technician. Meanwhile, two account managers have joined the business – Tom Carter and Chris Simons, The news comes just months after Auger previously announced six new recruits to its team as part of an expansion plan which aims to double the size of i....

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Wirral-based market-leading drainage and water supply pipe specialist Auger has been named the area’s best for customer service. The Wallasey business was named winner of the Wirral Business Awards 2017’s Customer Services award. In total, 11 awards were presented to local businesses, entrepreneurs and young people at the ceremony, held at Thornton Manor and attended by more than 500 people. Auger was selected for the shortlist by judges, and picked as a winner following a public vote. Other award winners included some of the area’s best-known businesses and organisations including Unilever and Tranmere Rovers. David Brewster, managing director of Auger, said: “There is nothing more important to us than our customer service, it really is at the heart of everything we do. “Our focus on customer service has helped make insurance claims handling for damaged drains and leaking water supply pipes, for instance, much easier for all concerned. Our consistently high customer satisfaction leve....

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Cyber-attacks are a major concern to insurers following the recent Petya-Wannacry ransomware that crippled parts of the NHS and a number of major companies across the world. Nearer home, Saint Gobain and its subsidiary Glass Solutions, a major supplier to the insurance industry, suffered information downtime, supply chain disruption and a negative 220 million-Euro effect on first-half year sales as a result of a cyber-attack. It is reasonable to suppose that insurers undertook robust enquiries into the IT security of all their approved suppliers.  In a recently published article, just two per cent of UK businesses think that a large-scale attack will affect their operations for more than 10 days. In reality, a separate report reveals that actual recovery time could take months or years. One of the main problems highlighted is that companies are using older versions of systems that are either not supported or not regularly updated with patches to secure against vulnerabilities that have....

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 Clients, like customers, expect access to live information and expect to access it without lifting the phone. Providing a client portal is relatively straightforward, providing a portal that clients will want to use is a lot more challenging. Understanding the needs of the end users and their workflows enabled the client portal Origin to be designed accordingly. By designing the portal to Google’s latest Material Design Standards, we were able to provide an interface and experience that is aligned to many of the most popular and frequently used websites which ensures first time users have a familiarity from the start. The Origin portal is an element of the Clarity suite of apps which give all parties the information relevant and speedily to them on a unified platform. Origin provides clients with the visibility of their claims, while its counterpart Eden is the claims management system that keeps Auger’s internal staff in control. Mobile applications support the other parties with cus....

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