The seventh installment of Towers Watson’s Property & Casualty Claim Officer Survey examines how, in a more data-rich environment, insurers are modernizing claim best practice fundamentals and rebuilding performance metrics. Improved technology and operational adjustments are helping respondents implement these changes.

The survey presents some important observations:

  • Carriers clearly view best practices as living documents and update them frequently.
  • Small carriers stress best practice execution and technology investments in improving operational efficiency and customer service.
  • Large carriers are much more likely to expect positive financial impacts and monitor bottom-line loss and expense results.
  • Survey responses show significant investment activity and growing technology application in the claim function, particularly among medium and large insurers, as well as commercial lines carriers.
  • Predictive modeling applications are growing slowly and are used most often by larger carriers, with fraud the initial focus, followed by triage; carriers making the investments are increasingly recognizing benefits.

Chief claim officers (CCOs) agree that claim best practices are valuable and insurers are best served if these guidelines are regularly reviewed and fine-tuned. Nearly a quarter of respondents have made major modifications to claim best practices within the past six months; more than half (56%) have done so within the past year, and three-quarters (75%) of respondents have made major changes within the last three years. 

Almost two-thirds of CCOs also report that claim-handling workflow processes are most positively influenced by recent system technology improvements. In fact, they indicate that technology affects virtually every aspect of claim operations and further investments are planned. This appetite for investment may be fueled by the way that recent investments have improved efficiency and cycle time as well as customer service.