Preparing for systems implementation.
A complete process redesign for an insurer.
Integrated system required
The claims processing division of a UK-based general insurer had embarked on an ambitious programme to specify and implement a bespoke, integrated claims management software system across their multi-site operation. It was recognised that an essential precursor to automation would be the optimisation, simplification and standardisation of their basic processes.
Process optimisation initiatives
The process optimisation project was conducted by a group drawn from all affected departments, and included:
- Process user group workshops to map current processes and agree on current best practice before identifying waste and process improvement opportunities and agreeing future-state process designs
- Pilot ‘model offices’ for all key processes, employing Lean principles and Work Organisation changes
- Bespoke training developed and delivered to drive improvements in operations management capability
- Emphasis on creating sustainability and self-sufficiency within the business by training staff in Lean tools and techniques
Over the course of the project, a full set of current-state best practice Process Maps were created that had been reviewed and agreed by all key interested parties. The new automated system design was informed by future-state Process Maps created at the same time.
Model offices were created to refine process improvements:
- A multi-product pilot team was created to process motor and home claims
- A system of ‘warm’ hand-offs was put in place to manage referrals to engineering support, minimising call-backs
- Causes of failure demand and misdirected calls were identified and resolved where possible
Across all the pilots, Work Organisation (5S), Visual Management and short-interval control techniques were introduced and quality feedback mechanisms put in place to address long-standing problems and clear extensive backlogs.
All site managers and team leaders received operations management training and internal trainers were made capable of delivering the material to a wider audience. Staff involved with the project developed a solid understanding of process improvement and Lean tools and techniques as well as practical experience in their implementation. Importantly, they were left with the confidence and the skills to manage the rollout of new standardised best practices to the wider company and to ensure that process improvements were sustainable.
21% productivity improvement