Transparency can add profit and improve the customer experience by subtracting the stress and anxiety that creates a more expensive customer. Yesterday we looked at three key triggers of anxiety that are relevant to our industry, and how they can add to the stress and anxiety that home owners feel during the restoration process. Today I would like to look at how we can use transparency to combat these triggers.
iCAT Contents and iCAT in the Cloud users provide home owners and adjusters with ongoing transparency through web portals that are integral to the service that they provide. Home owners are able to log-in and stay involved with the restoration of their possessions. These portals tackle all three of the challenges of waiting that we referenced.
Home owner’s time is no longer unoccupied, as they have access to information and will take advantage of it. They spend their time reviewing information, watching for updates, and when necessary entering a customer service ticket. They no longer struggle with waiting to ‘get started’ because they are no longer in the dark. They are connected and engaged from the outset, rather than simply sitting around, waiting. Being actively able to engage the process lowers their anxiety and gives them a feeling of remaining connected to their possessions. It raises consumer confidence and lowers anxiety.
Realizing all of this simply brings us back to the original question. How do we reflect the transparency of a firm’s operations in its value? There may not be any easy, simple answer to valuing it in quantified terms (although I can make some suggestions) but I think we may find other ways to reflect the value. I would suggest that we could start by considering it as both a customer service deliverable that elevates and separates our company’s service from the competition, and as an as yet unmeasured cost reduction (time) for all parties involved in the claim.
Transparency needs to be more than a ‘buzz’ word for our industry. It needs to be a value-added service, delivered by tier one contractors that enhances the customer experience, and lowers unmeasured costs for contractors, adjusters and home owners alike.