An insurance company may offer the best rates with the widest array of products but still lose customers to a competitor. The leading cause for this is poor customer service. Poor service can take many forms, including not resolving the customer’s issue, lacking reliability, or difficulty reaching a representative.
Insurance providers can implement the following to deliver consistent customer service that exceeds expectations:
- Knowledgeable representatives. Service representatives can’t troubleshoot or solve a customer’s problem if they aren’t familiar with the products. However, baseline knowledge isn’t enough. Support employees need to be subject matter experts on the insurer’s products. This helps them deliver superior service as well as make other product recommendations that compliment the customer’s existing coverage.
- Innovative problem-solving. Resolving the customer’s problem is the primary goal, but customer service doesn’t have to stop there. Customers aren’t likely to share their experiences when the service is straightforward. They are happy to have their issue dealt with, but the experience wasn’t noteworthy. Insurers can take customer service to the next level by offering customers more than they expected when placing the call. Examples include a small customer loyalty discount on their upcoming payment, a personalized card thanking them for their business, or useful company swag (e.g., mugs, water bottles, pens, etc.). The key is to go above and beyond, as that is more likely to drive positive reviews and referrals.
- Personalize the service. Customers can tell when an agent reads them a scripted response, and they don’t appreciate it. It demonstrates that the agent isn’t familiar with the customer’s products or isn’t adequately perceiving the problem. Service without personalization leaves customers feeling like they’re file numbers rather than individuals. For example, if the agent sees that a customer’s birthday is coming up, the agent can wish the customer a happy birthday to personalize the experience.
- Deliver on promises. When customer service representatives make promises or give their word, they need to make sure they follow through. When an insurance company doesn’t deliver on a promise, the customer feels angry and disrespected. Agents should note the customer’s file with the details, so other representatives will know what the customer is referencing if they call back.
A significant element of delivering excellent service is investing in a high-quality call center. Nearshore call centers ensure that the agents have similar cultural experiences with the customers, which allows them to have greater empathy and understanding for the customer’s needs. Contact the experts at Actec to learn more about the benefits of a nearshore call center.
Insurance claim adjusters have a difficult job. They take the brunt of angry client phone calls while managing a workload of dozens if not hundreds of claims at any given time. However, while customer service is part of the job, there are several ways to improve the experience to cut down on the number of complaints. Improving the customer experience isn’t just about resolving complaints either. Twenty percent of customers never complain at all; they let their wallet do the talking and find insurance elsewhere. The following suggestions can help improve the customer’s experience and loyalty.
- Follow up often until settlement. Unlike sales calls, customers always want to hear from their claim adjuster. Adjusters should call more often at the onset of a claim when the customer is most upset and in need of guidance. By maintaining frequent contact, the customer isn’t left wondering about the status of their claim or what steps they should take next.
- Provide emotional support. One of the most common customer complaints is that their insurance provider doesn’t care about them. While there isn’t enough time in the day for a claim adjuster to provide the amount of emotional support every single customer needs after an accident, showing even a little compassion goes a long way.
- Handle complaints with grace. Most of the time, a customer just wants someone to listen to them and apologize for the poor experience. While no adjuster like to listen to criticism, validating a customer’s frustration helps retention rates.
- Promote rapid action. Most customer complaints center on delays and lengthy claims processes. However, customers are the root cause for most of these delays. Pointing this out to the customer isn’t likely to yield a positive outcome; instead, the adjuster should encourage the customer to supply necessary documents as soon as possible.
Even when certain tasks are out of the adjusters’ hands, they can influence the outcome of a claim. If your company is struggling with customer retention rates, Actec can help. Contact us to learn more about improving your claims management processes.
First notice of loss (FNOL) occurs when a customer first contacts their insurance provider to make a claim. It should not come as a surprise if the customer is upset. They were either just in an accident, experienced a theft, or some other kind of damage occurred to their insured property. An insurer’s FNOL process offers a major customer service opportunity to improve customer satisfaction and retention.
How to Improve FNOL Satisfaction
A claim intake specialist may feel they cannot improve a customer’s experience if the customer is already distressed. It is true the specialist may not be able to improve the customer’s situation in that instant. However, there are steps they can take to leave a positive long-term impression.
The claim intake specialist should explain the policy coverage to the customer. Even though the customer selected their current level of coverage, they may not remember every detail about their policy. No customer wants to be left in the dark when it comes to what his or her policy covers.
The specialist should also provide details on the claims process. The customer may not know what steps they need to take or when to expect their claim payout. If the customer knows it takes 5-7 business days for their claim payout to process, they will not be wondering where their money is three or four days after filing their claim.
Improving customer satisfaction through FNOL goes beyond retaining current customers. Customers who are delighted with their insurance provider’s performance are much more likely to recommend their insurer to others. To learn about custom in-house solutions to improve your FNOL process, contact Actec.