From tornadoes to floods, we really have seen it all in New Zealand this year and often the summer season is just as fraught with natural disasters.

With the next catastrophic event possibly around the corner, it’s critical insurers have an adequate, flexible and effective team on their side to manage claimant demands.

In my decades of working in insurance in New Zealand, I’ve never seen such a challenging surge season ahead of us. It’s unfortunately been quite the perfect storm, with talent retention and recruitment proving more and more difficult, the cost of claims remediation due to escalating inflationary pressures and availability of goods, materials and tradespeople, combined with claimant demands and needs skyrocketing. Add in an evolving climate and legislative changes, and insurers certainly have their work cut out for them this summer.

At Gallagher Bassett, we’ve been closely monitoring these trends to make sure we can support insurers and claimants through this challenging time. It’s clear that property and motor claims will spike in coming months, with business interruption following closely. Resolution of these claims will likely be delayed due to these supply chain disruptions and sheer volume. But, it’s not all storm and gloom for insurers, with two key actions you can take now to be prepared:

  1. Test your catastrophe plan

Just like the scout motto, ‘be prepared. Prepare ahead of the event. A plan is only as good as the day it gets put to the test, but once disaster strikes it can be too late to make any required changes if a plan doesn’t work. This often leads to teams making spontaneous, uninformed decisions that can have far-reaching ramifications. It’s critical that your business’s catastrophe plan has been tested, evaluated and adapted to meet what risks you and your policy holders are likely to face.

  1. Evaluate your resourcing

It’s been a challenging year for talent acquisition and retention, but even if your team is adequately resourced, the ongoing pressure of the pandemic means many may be struggling with physical and mental burnout. Make sure your business has an up-to-date measurement of the cultural pulse, and can identify where particular teams may need additional support during surge season. This doesn’t necessarily mean you need to go out and try to recruit in this tough market, but you might need to consider how partnerships, technology and other supports could help you alleviate some of the pressure.

Whether it’s testing your catastrophe plan, managing claimant communications and assessments, resolving files or providing data insights on how your book is performing – partnering with a TPA like Gallagher Bassett can see you access a range of Catastrophic Claims solutions to bolster your existing capability.

Our solutions are supported by dedicated, experienced loss adjusters and claims professionals who have chosen to make managing claims their career. With technical experts, claims officers and team leaders on our team, whenever your business needs to pivot you can trust that we have a support for you.

If you’re looking for a way through surge season, Gallagher Bassett can support you by:

  • Enhancing your catastrophic planning
  • Assist in reducing claim backlogs from past events
  • Manage first notification of loss, further information requests or claims reviews
  • Providing a flexible resource model, which help insurers maintain a fixed headcount to more effectively control costs
  • Control claims costs and leakage
  • Deliver excellent customer service
  • Rapidly scale to respond to your claimant’s needs
  • Seasonal cover over the holiday period.

Connect with me today to find out how we can help.

Blog Author

Steven Walsh

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