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 opportunities for a customer to experience an insurer’s service delivery and discover what they have actually purchased with their policy. “Each call will need to go through certain steps – data protection, confirming cover and set up a claim, but this shouldn’t take more than a few minutes. “Often claims handlers are then unable to deal with the more technical aspects of the rest of the call, for instance where complicated claims are involved such as drainage or water supply pipes.
In some cases, customers may have even been misinformed about an aspect of the process. “If an insurer is not in a position to fully integrate its supply chain, it’s worth considering turning to trusted supply partners to handle the majority of the call. A commitment could be made that they will accept a transfer of the call, or agree to call the customer back within 15 minutes. “This reduces call time in a claims centre, and allows the experts to have an informed and productive conversation at the earliest opportunity.”