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What happens if the queen calls?

Almost all insurers, adjusters and brokers offer a dedicated product or service for High Net Worth individuals. These policyholders expect a service that goes above and beyond that offered in mass market claims. They are paying a premium and expect to receive a service that meets their needs, when and how they want it. From the moment they pick up the telephone to the time their property and possessions are returned to them, the expectations are high.

Here lies the challenge. Whilst insurers, brokers and adjusters deliver the impeccable client care expected, the supply chain doesn’t always deliver with the same quality of service. In fact, in too many cases your clients are treated like everyone else.

So, what needs to be different? What do Damage Management companies need to deliver to support your High Net Worth proposition? In this article we will explore the key questions the High Net Worth insurance market need answered so that a Damage Management company can become a credible partner, exploring both the rational and emotional characteristics they need to display to be able to operate successfully in this space. 

Do they tick the procurement boxes?

Firstly, there are some ‘hygiene factors’ to consider which may refine the list of potential partners to consider. Can they scale up while maintaining consistency? Can they make clear commitments around quality? What happens if there is a quality failure? Are they financially and operationally stable? Do they have a demonstrable track record of delivering above and beyond?

Are you clear about what impeccable client care looks like?

Part of the challenge in any service-led business is that ‘good’ is entirely subjective. But impeccable really shouldn’t be too hard to define should it? Some of those measures are emotional – the sense of care the policyholder receives – after all we all know that the journey is often more memorable than the destination. There are rational measures too of course – first call from FNOL, first visit etc. You need a partner that understands your priorities and those of your clients and can shape their service provision around you – not the other way around.

How can the suppliers process be shaped to fit your customers’ needs?

Without process there is organisational and project anarchy. But process also needs to be flexible – in the context of High Net Worth it needs to be shaped to the client, not just to the event. Can your partner offer you and your client the flexibility required, or will they just pay lip service to it? What is the process? What happens when something goes wrong?

Does the Damage Management company have dedicated resource?

High Net Worth cannot be treated like a BAU claim. They need to see that they are treated differently, that the service is enhanced and tailored to them. And in order to do that you need a partner that has a dedicated High Net Worth resource – one that has the empathy to understand and the integrity to deliver.

Do they have a validated sub-contractor network?

We can all Google ‘local carpenter’ and hope to find a good one. But no-one is going to let a rookie, or worse, loose on their priceless Chippendale furniture without some kind of verification of their skills. Can your partner provide you with a referenced, validated network? How are they validated? Are there regular appraisals of their performance? Quality isn’t just in the gift of the insurer or Damage Management company – it needs to run throughout the supply chain – how do they demonstrate that commitment beyond their four walls?

How do they ensure everyone is part of the process while not bogged down in the process?

Communication is key to all parties, but the client must remain at the centre of everything. From the policyholder to the insurer, loss adjuster, broker, estate manager and so on, there needs to be transparent communication and clarity of role – for everyone. Can your partner give you one single point of contact who handles the claim from FNOL to handover? Are they able to liaise with clients efficiently while having the technical knowledge to deal with an adjuster? Do they have the time and resource needed to effectively manage everyone? Can they become your best friend?

What KPIs can be applied to this service?

This isn’t a sausage factory operation. But that doesn’t mean there shouldn’t be some measures in place. The ultimate measure of course should be client satisfaction, because inevitably that leads to renewal. Is your partner prepared to think outside of the conventional and place the client and their happiness at the centre of their success criteria?

Are they a partner who shares your values or are they just a supplier?

Although the last point considered in this article, many would argue it should be the first. Finding a partner that shares your values is fundamental to the creation of a mutually beneficial and long-standing relationship. Do they look beyond their own four walls to harness trends, so they can continuously offer an innovative, best in class service? Do they strive for relationships that are based on openness, honesty, and feedback? Are they brave? Can they back up that bravery with resource?

It is this combination of care and commitment to quality that a partner needs to demonstrate, so that if the Queen calls, you are in good shape to deliver the claim promise you make to your customers.

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