SALT Associates has been studying disability claim organizations for more than a decade. Within every operation we find there are strengths as well as opportunities for improvement. However, one challenge we consistently find is the effective use of the telephone as a claimant communication tool.
We strongly believe — and most carriers and TPAs would agree — that the telephone is still one of the most important risk management and customer service tools. In addition, we feel that claimants deserve the personal level of communication and service. Unfortunately, for a variety of reasons, many claim organizations struggle to consistently and effectively use this tool to manage claims.
Calling and interviewing claimants requires a specific skill set, ongoing training, a workflow and infrastructure that supports the effort, ability to measure and monitor performance, and perhaps most importantly, upper management belief that calling claimants impacts both risk and customer service results. Including claimant calls in the day-to-day workflow can be difficult given work scope of the disability claim professional. These calls require time to prepare, and time to focus.
Disability claims offer many opportunities to call claimants including the initial liability interview, a change in definition review, pre-maintenance block transition, and periodic calls to claimant in the maintenance area. Our team can support your claim operation in one or all of these situations.
Our claims team recently called and interviewed 500 disability claimants on behalf of one of our customers. Approximately 25% of these calls generated a risk management result or change in the management direction. In addition, claimants expressed appreciation for being spoken to personally. Many had not heard from their carrier in more than two years.
If you’re interested in learning more on this topic and how SALT can help, pick up the phone and give us a call, or contact us.