People Always Ask Me

As President of International Insurance Institute, I receive requests (at least 3 times a year) from companies in the U.S. to help them set up claims handling operations outside of the U.S. (usually in India).

Even Kids are Outsourcing

The goal of these companies is to handle claims for the U.S. customers but lower the expense dramatically by using inexpensive labor.

If you think about it, anything that can be handled by internet and telephone these days can be handled anywhere in the world, so I understand the lure to set up such operations in order to reduce a companies largest expense which is typically personnel. Sure, they will start with the easy stuff like glass loss, but they’re going to work their way up to the harder stuff.

Whenever I receive these calls, I always decline (I’m not interested in helping move jobs out of the United States, thank you very much!). But you know what, If I don’t do it somebody else will. And from what I understand this is already happening.

The push towards customer service in the claims industry is not only the concern of the companies themselves, but should also be the concern of the employees within them. The ability to deliver truly outstanding customer service has a direct connection to job security. Once someone outside of the U.S. can deliver customer service “almost” as good as we can, we can kiss our jobs goodbye since the cost of that labor is 1/4 the cost of our labor.

All of us in the claims industry need to be completely focused on customer experience and be much, much better than our low cost competition.

These are just my thoughts on the subject but I would love to know yours. Do you agree, disagree? Looking forward to hearing your your thoughts.


About carlvanclaimsexpert

Carl Van, President & CEO of International Insurance Institute, Inc., graduated from California State University, Sacramento where he received his bachelor’s degree in Insurance. He has been in the insurance claims industry since 1980 and has held the positions of Claims Adjuster, Claims Supervisor, Claims Manager, Division Claims Manager and Regional Manager over Claims, Loss Control and Premium Audit. Mr. Van has set up 5 in-house claims training programs for various insurance companies throughout the United States, and has written articles for Claims magazine, Claims Education Magazine, Claims Advisor, Claims People magazine, The Subrogator, The National Underwriter, California Insurance Journal and over 100 other national magazines. He is the author of over 75 technical and soft skill workshops being taught throughout the U.S., Canada and the U.K. He has been a keynote speaker at claims conferences around the country, a trainer at an international U.S-Japanese executive training program, a guest speaker at hundreds of claims association seminars, and selected as the opening presenter at some of the most prestigious claims conferences in the United States and Canada. Mr. Van is the Dean of the School of Claims Performance, and has served as both board member and Regional Vice President of the Society of Insurance Trainers and Educators. He is owner and publisher of Claims Education Magazine, and board president of both the Claims Education Conference and the International Claims Executive Academy. Mr. Van is creator, presenter and producer of all claims training videos at Claims Education On Line, which include Time Management, Customer Service, Negotiations and Critical Thinking, all specific to claims professionals. He owner and publisher of Claims Professional Books On Line, and is the author of the highly acclaimed book The 8 Characteristics of the Awesome Adjuster, which has sold internationally throughout the United States, Canada, Newfoundland, Guam, Singapore, France, Australia, England, Chile, Ireland, and 15 other countries. Other books by Carl Van include Gaining Cooperation, The Claims Cookbook, and Attitude, Ability and the 80/20 Rule. Other credits include being an arbitrator, a licensed agent, a TASA certified expert witness for insurance Bad Faith suits, as well as a national auditor for a federal regulatory agency.

Posted on August 11, 2011, in General and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. This is very sad. It’s not just the cost of labor. 60 Minutes Sunday interviewed Cisco CEO who said they have outsourced to other countries over 100,000 jobs because of corporate taxes alone. Doesn’t our government understand basic economics of supply/demand? High tax rates in the US at 35% vs. lower tax rates in Ireland 15% – where would you want to place your service and manufacturing operations. What a mess!

    • carlvanclaimsexpert

      I agree Sandra. Those taxes alone would be enough for a company to think they have to outsource. If there was more being done here to combat those taxes then outsourcing would not have to happen.

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