When do customers reach out to their insurance providers? When they apply, when they have a change in policy, when they have a question, and when they make a claim.
The claims process can make or break a customer’s experience because it’s the most crucial element in the customer lifecycle. That’s what they’re paying for, it’s the reason they buy insurance - and it’s typically a high-stress point in their life.
But what do customers want?
A JD Power survey identifies that the three components with the highest impact to overall satisfaction include:
- Fairness of the claim settlement
- How well claimants were kept informed on claim progress
- Time to settle the claim
But what it all boils down to, according to an independent P&C Customer Satisfaction survey, is whether the policyholder believes that the insurance company is acting in their best interest.
So in order to improve customer satisfaction in the claims process, keep that front and center!
Set clear expectations
From the moment a claim is filed, ensure the customer knows that you’re there for them, to help them get through this tough time so they can get their life back on track.
Paint them a clear picture of how the claims process works, how settlements are determined, and the steps that will occur along the way. Setting those expectations will give them peace of mind that you’ve got them covered and help them understand when and where they need to be involved.
It can also reduce the number of times they reach out to request an update which leads to a better experience and reduces the workload of your claims department.
Be prompt and responsive
Should claimants still feel the need to reach out during the claims process, make it easy for them to do so. The longer they wait on your response, the less likely they are to be happy with their claims experience.
Customers value clear and constant communication throughout the entire claims process. Let customers contact you in a way that works best for them. Phone, email, dashboards, apps - open up communication channels to make it easy to contact you.
Consider providing a single point of contact
A report from McKinsey indicated that switching from a contact center to a single point of contact increased customer satisfaction by 50% and reduced follow-up inquiries by over 80% in a particular case study.
It can allow you to get to know your customers and their individual needs. A dedicated point of contact can provide a great first impression. It will also help to make them feel heard throughout the claims process.
The last thing a claimant wants to do is get shuffled around between departments or talk to someone different every time they pick up the phone.
Make information accessible
Between email, ticketing, live chat, and countless other communication channels it’s easy to lose track of critical information. An integrated experience and streamlined access to information can provide a more transparent claims process.
Ensure your claims professionals have access to this information as well so that they can fully support customers when they’re on the phone with them.
A knowledge base can also help customers to quickly find answers to their questions. The difference here is that you want to provide information on the claims process as opposed to their specific claim and policy.
There are a lot of moving pieces in the claims process, especially for someone who’s not familiar with it, such as a customer. Improving their understanding of how submission, inspection, documentation, and adjusting play a role reinforces the expectations you set from the beginning.
Automate mundane tasks
Automating mundane tasks can not only speed up the claims process but also free up claims professionals to be more available to customers.
It can also create a more repeatable process and a therefore more predictable outcome. The results of which can be increased productivity, faster triage, and assignment of claims.
Manage emotions and relieve stress
It’s important for claims representatives to remain level-headed while communicating with emotional policyholders. Between managing several claims and dealing with stressed-out claimants, it can start to wear off on them.
A bad attitude is enough to push an already distressed claimant over the edge. Training, support, and a positive work environment can help to destress claims representatives and keep them professional when dealing with customers
If you take care of your claims staff, they’ll take care of your customers.
The claims process can be unpredictable. Especially when your department is experiencing a higher volume of claims.
Be prepared to outsource work to independent claims professionals you know and trust to uphold your policies - who can contribute to the level of experience your customers expect.
US Claim Solutions can be that trusted partner for you. We’re available to service your claims 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, nationwide.
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call at (888) 701-1153.