The Technological Revolution is Here
By Jennifer Jackson
Over the years as a claims adjusting firm, we have seen trends come and go in this industry. Carriers are always looking for better ways to reduce claims-handling expenses while still providing a quality customer experience. One trend that is here to stay is technology.
With Sears recently announcing its closure of hundreds of stores across the country, we have proof that if you don’t change your business model over time, you may go out of business completely. The one-time leader in retail sales will be obsolete in coming years — the sole reason being a failure to adapt when companies like Amazon began to take over the retail space. The taxi industry remained largely unchanged for 50 years until competition forced companies to transform. Uber offers a better customer experience at a lower cost, and in some major cities, taxi usage has dropped more than 50 percent since Uber’s founding in 2009. Every industry should take note of the Uber phenomenon. All it takes is one innovative, tech-based approach to drastically improve customer experience, and the Uber model proves that customers will flock to the product.
In the last 25 years, the insured’s experience with claims has relatively remained the same. The job of the adjuster has been made easier with innovations like computer estimating, digital cameras, and satellite roof measurements. While the adjuster’s job may be easier, claims-handling costs for carriers has increased to near record levels. This rise in costs can be contributed to many factors, increased litigation not being the least of them. Cross Country Adjusting set out on a mission to lower costs in all facets of this process while using the most advanced technology available to improve our customers’ experience. This was not an easy task but one we were determined to achieve.
The usage of smart-phone technology is at the forefront of this movement. Ninety-five percent of Americans now own a cell phone, and more than 80 percent of those are smart phones. Within minutes after a claim is received, we can text the insured a link to download our app. Once the app is downloaded, all the insured has to do is hold their phone. Our desk adjusters direct the insured through the app to point at what we need to see, gathering video, photos, measurements, and documentation of the loss within minutes. At this point, accurate reserves and mitigation needs can be determined, and we control the entire process from the very start of the claim, setting mitigation budgets and reserves up front based on documentation obtained from the phone. In many cases, we can settle the claim, including estimating directly from the video call with the insured. In the last two years, we have made payments on more than 15,000 claims within 24 hours of the claims being filed. Customer satisfaction ratings are at record-high levels among the carriers using our service because we have implemented technology that greatly reduces claims-handling expenses while vastly improving the customer’s experience.
We know that every claim can’t be settled using smart phones. In our field inspections, adjusters use a proprietary app-based software to document the loss. This ensures a consistent product back to the client on every claim — no matter what software is used for estimating because our app fully integrates with all the choices. We have also implemented more than 300 drones across our coverage area for usage on high- and steep-roof losses.
The customer’s experience in the claims process should be seamless and effortless. As claims professionals, we must adapt to today’s swipe-and-click world. At Cross Country Adjusting, we are at the forefront of this movement. Whether it be our app-based desk adjustments, rapid-response field adjustments, or our managed repair program, we believe in using the latest possible technological tools to improve the claims process.
Cross Country Adjusting Inc. is a full-service residential and commercial property independent adjusting firm that offers nationwide service. We are proud to offer more than 2000 highly trained desk and field adjusters to service claims. Cross Country Managed Repair, LLC is a subsidiary that handles insurance claim restoration and repair under managed repair programs for insurance carriers. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.