Innovative UK-based claims-handling company VFM is launching in Australia, with plans to train brokers, insurer professionals and loss adjusters on how to effectively identify and combat fraudulent claims even when they may be miles away from the client.
VFM’s core offering consists of being is an outsourced provider of desktop claims handling, and training customer-facing insurance professionals on desk-top claims management and how to weed out fraudulent claims through telephone conversations with the claimant.
Speaking exclusively with Insurance Business
, VFM directors Meera Bhatt said the company will primarily offer Antipodean companies training services, however will leave the door open for companies to outsource claims management.
The training focuses on conversation-management: Trainees are taught how to use psychology to create rapport and empathy with customers over the phone.
“If that customer is telling lies there are certain psychological techniques that can be used to put the potential fraudster on the back foot and they can be unnerved easily,” Bhatt said. “It’s all about training people in how to use the techniques to their advantage and manage fraudulent customers. Sometimes you do not have the benefit of seeing the customer face-to-face.”
VFM director Sally Griffiths said the reason for expanding into Australia is that industry professionals are finding it difficult to effectively manage volumes of claims across such a large geographical area.
“Australia is such a huge country and as such industry professionals have a huge area to cover when attending to claims,” Bhatt said. “The UK is much smaller. While you could see a number of claims across the UK in a few hours, in Australia we are talking about thousands of miles. You could not do that in one day. We felt we ought to get involved in providing the solution we already have in the UK.”
In addition, VFM, which also this month launched in Canada, is to offer an outsourcing service in the form of a 24/7 call centre service to the Australian insurance industry during storm season. VFM offers this service for household, motor liability and travel claims.
VFM receives instructions from the insurance client, contacts customer, dedicates a case manager to assess the claim, identifies and agrees and concerns or anomalies with customer, and requests documents and evidence to resolve and explains follow up actions. If the documents are not provided within 21 days the claim is considered withdrawn. If the documents are provided then outstanding enquires are completed. If evidence suggests the claim should be rejected then the claim is not proven, otherwise it is settled on best terms.
VFM says that when claim is proven to be high risk, some customers will walk away rather than provide the requested information.
Griffiths and her team plan to travel to Australia to meet with industry professionals and the business is also looking at potential office bases for the Australian branch.
Having spoken at length with contacts in Australia, Griffiths said: “It’s clear that the training we provide are skills they would like to have but in the past would have been forced to travel to the UK to receive them, now they don’t have to.”
To find out more about VFM visit: www.vfm-services.com