Claims division shake-up results in Bird's exit

Groupama's claims director Phil Bird is leaving the insurer following a restructure of its claims business.

Groupama said in a statement that as a result of the claims restructure and the "lack of a suitable alternative position" that Bird would be leaving the company.

The insurer said the restructure would ensure it is "more closely aligned with the company's business divisions and focused sharply on the particular needs of partner brokers and their clients".

Groupama managing director Laurent Matras said: "I am really grateful to Phil for his support and hard work over the past couple of years in helping me to rationalise and reshape our Claims operations to fit our changing business model. We wish Phil well for the future."

Groupama said the changes mark a further development of a divisional structure that was set in place in early 2009.

Back then its underwriting, distribution and service were combined into discrete operational units to service the company’s personal lines, commercial lines and healthcare business.

Operational responsibility for the company's Port Solent claims centre will now switch from Bird to Kevin Kiernan and Malcolm Smith, the respective directors of Groupama's personal and commercial lines divisions.

Matras said: "This change to our organisation will ensure that our claims people are aligned even more closely to the particular needs of our business divisions and is designed to ensure that we can respond more quickly to the dynamics of the various markets where we are active.

"It will also allow the divisions to be accountable for our claims delivery and to influence it more directly, whilst developing the levels of customer satisfaction that our specialist broker partners expect for their clients.”

As part of the changes Groupama's corporate claims support and control functions together with the large and complex loss team will now report separately from the operational claims team. With immediate effect these teams will report direct to Matras.

"They will retain their focus on developing the future direction of our Claims operations, managing our large claims and maximising the technical excellence and efficiency of our claims processes,” added Matras.

“This will ensure that that we continue to enhance our effectiveness and minimise our costs.”

Bird recently attended a roundtable event hosted by Insurance Times on third-party capture. Click here to read the coverage.