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Case Study: Salvage Disposal and Recovery Operations

—March 24, 2009
Case Study: Salvage Disposal and Recovery Operations

One of the nation's leading insurers uses Mitchell Salvage Management™ to speed settlement during catastrophes

About Mitchell Salvage Management

Salvage Management is a comprehensive loss vehicle disposition solution that operates in real-time, automating inefficient and costly manual processes. It provides carriers with complete visibility of all their salvage disposal and recovery processes and their trading partner relationships.

With Mitchell Salvage Management™, carriers are instantly connected to a network of more than 350 salvage yards, enabling them to select the pools that best meet their needs—regardless of geography—while maintaining and managing business relations with multiple pools.

Disasters are never pleasant, but they are unfortunately a part of life for the folks of the United States Gulf Coast when hurricane season rears its ugly head each and every year. Getting through these types of catastrophes requires a lot of knowledge and patience—especially since total losses come with this territory.

One of the nation's largest insurers uses Mitchell Salvage Management to streamline and manage its salvage disposal and recovery operations.

According to a senior claims manager, Salvage Management has helped this organization, which processes approximately 130,000 total losses each year, experience substantial benefits to its bottom line through improved cycle times and increased customer satisfaction.

"Extreme situations like hurricanes and natural disasters can be really tough for everyone to handle. Often times our customers call in their total loss claims before they actually happen because they've been through this before, and they want to get a jump-start on their claims," says this manager.

"Especially in situations where we experience high claims volumes, particularly when there are an abnormal amount of total loss claims to expedite, Mitchell has come through for us. Salvage Management has also helped us during other disasters like Katrina and other storms that have devastated parts of the Gulf Coast."

According to this manager, they are able to process assignments faster than their competitors.This efficiency gain is a result of the ability to pre-populate the online form with claims data from their Mitchell estimating systems. From there, the claims representative simply fills in the remaining required fields and then connects to the salvage yard of choice. The salvage yard instantaneously receives the information they need to start towing vehicles to their yards for processing.

"Because of the streamlined interface, we are able to set up an automated claim assignment in our system as soon as a claim representative hangs up with the customer. As a result, our cycle times are very quick—reduced from 4 weeks to 25 days—because we're able to keep the claim moving along smoothly throughout the entire process and call the customer more promptly to settle a claim. Not only are we able to better service our customers and give them some relief during these difficult times, we are simultaneously able to increase our salvage recovery rates and decrease our salvage-related operating expenses by approximately $9,000 per catastrophe," says this senior claims manager.

Salvage Management's ease-of-use also impressed this leading insurer—especially in areas of training and implementation, which have traditionally been difficult to manage. "The last thing you need when you are handling a large amount of catastrophe-related total losses where action needs to be taken quickly are slowdowns," says this senior claims manager."Dealing with these situations doesn't always go as planned, and you have to improvise and put non-salvage personnel on the job. With Salvage Management, there is almost no training involved to get staff up and running immediately. Within a short amount of time, our extra staff members are prepared to gather all of the information they need to expedite claims. This definitely affects the bottom line and improves customer satisfaction."

Salvage Management's reporting features are also used extensively to get a complete picture of this insurer's salvage disposal and recovery processes and trading partner relationships. "We can quickly validate each piece of information, allowing us to filter out the storm claims from the regular claims.We can track quite a bit of information, which helps us make better decisions when other catastrophes strike."
This insurer definitely puts customer service at the top of its priority list and says that Salvage Management has passed the test—even during catastrophes. "I'm a big advocate of customer service, and when we are able to take care of our customers more quickly, especially during a catastrophe when they need us the most, it makes me feel good."

"And the fact that we're able to optimize our total loss disposal operations with one single solution while also fully-supporting our salvage recovery initiatives—saving us time and streamlining our operations—is even more amazing," says this senior claims manager.


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