The role of claims in client service

Published on 08 February 2021

Welcome to Insurance Covered! The podcast that looks at the inner workings of the insurance industry with the help of expert guests.

Welcome to Insurance Covered! The podcast that looks at the inner workings of the insurance industry with the help of expert guests. Our guest this week is Andrew Pedler, Head of Claims Client Relationships and Innovation at Liberty Specialty Markets, and we will be discussing the role of claims in client service.

We start by discussing Andrew's role at Liberty, what it involves and what he is trying to achieve. He explains his role has two main parts; the client relationship side and the innovation. On the client relationship side, it is looking at the firm's relationships with policy holders and brokers, engaging in conversations and ensuring that the firm as a whole are delivering on promises and meeting the needs of clients. It also looks at how the claims team can have a crucial role of winning and keeping business. On the innovation side, it is mainly looking at implementing new strategies that will complement the client relationship building "it's looking at something that you can implement into an organisation. So, it might be the implementation of a customer management strategy or a strategy to improve our client service and then implementing that change throughout the business".

We then go on to discuss specifically how a claims team can be a key part of winning and keeping business and how the role of a claims team is changing. Andrew puts it simply; "If you have a good claim experience you are much more likely to renew business. It's just a fact. Likewise, if you've had a poor experience then you're likely to go elsewhere". He goes on to explain traditionally a claims team would be reactive, they would wait for a policy to trigger, investigate and then decide if the claim was valid. Now the team is more proactive " now we spend a lot of time with our customers and our brokers either before their policy is incepted so making sure that people understand the policy and then after the inception make sure that we have the right contacts and procedures in place so that client knows what to expect in the event of a claim". Its far more client centric, a claims team deal with people and companies in trying and difficult times, being a friendly face can help them through the process. 

Andrew then explains other ways in which they build relationships with clients. He explains they run a number of workshops, where they go through a claims scenario, how the claim came into play explaining what is happening behind the scenes and the process from policy being triggered to a policy being paid out. They go through risk mitigation, ensuring they understand the risk, the warning signs and ultimately how to avoid the risk entirely. 

We then discuss how this has changed over the last year, and how the COVID-19 pandemic has changed how Andrew and his team operate. He explains that it is the same idea's and strategies but has moved from face to face meetings to more virtual interactions. He emphasised that its important to maintain personal interactions even if it has to be socially distanced and online.  Andrew goes on to explain that the move to online meetings can be a negative it also brings positives; "there is a great opportunity to meet more of our customers and our clients. I can now meet with whole teams within a client's organisation with multiple clients at once". 

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