Sue Langley says Lloyd’s is winning the cultural revolution to implement electronic claims handling
Lloyd’s has huge strengths, so what are the challenges facing us in becoming a more modern and efficient marketplace? I know that’s a question the market often asks and, if I had a definitive answer, my job would be a lot simpler.
But the truth is there is no silver bullet. There are a number of challenges that we face and how we respond to them is down to focus, perseverance and a real desire to do things differently.
We should remember we are trying to change years of working practice. Electronic claims files (ECF) are a good example. It is a new way of working and takes getting used to and in some instances the interplay between claims broker and managing agent is also changing.
A number of agents with claims workflow systems have found this new practice easy to adopt, while others have found it can take longer.
Everyone is different. We need to be honest and learn from this and look at enhancing the way the system works. Nothing is perfect, especially not on day one, but none of these issues should be used as a reason not to adopt a way of working that aims to improve the service to our customers.
So what are some of the key claims questions?
1 - The managing agents we deal with don’t participate.
This is not true. We have the positions of all managing agents and can review this on a weekly basis. With the exception of one or two (where discussions are underway) the majority of managing agents are working very hard to make this a success.
2 - The brokers we deal with don’t participate.
It’s true that some brokers are not live, (currently 75% by volume). However, 98% of brokers by volume will be up and running by the end of the year.
3 - Our claims are out of scope.
“A number of managing agents and brokers are leading
the field and are already using ECF on or close to 100% of in-scope claims and deserve praise for their performance
Eighty-two per cent of claims are now in scope. There have been issues with binder business as if a binder incepted before 1 July the class system could not handle it at that time. This has now been changed and we are working hard to get remaining claims in scope as quickly as possible.
Looking ahead, in 2008 it will be a requirement of new market entrants to use ECF for all in-scope claims.
A number of managing agents and brokers are leading the field and are already using ECF on or close to 100% of in-scope claims and deserve praise for their performance and energy in adopting a new way of working.
Brokers, such as Millers, are committed to this and Aegis has recently announced a change in its working practices to focus on electronic claims.
We need to remember that ECF is just one of the reforms we are focusing on here at Lloyd’s to ensure that it is the marketplace of choice for business worldwide.
We have already achieved the FSA set target on contract certainty and have introduced a quality assurance tool to assist brokers and underwriters in automatically checking slips.
We are also working on automating the accounting and settlement processes and are currently piloting a scheme to streamline the way we handle coverholders.
The same challenges face us in all areas. The biggest hurdle isn’t the technology or the way we operate, it’s the cultural issue.
Progress is being made and I believe that there is a real energy and focus around reform that hasn’t been there in the past.
Change is never easy. But by working together we will get there.
Sue Langley is director of market operations at Lloyd’s and a member of the Market Reform Group