PPI claims specialist Lion Claimline can afford to operate on a ‘no win, no fee’ basis thanks to its intelligent contact and customer management system, First Contact. This allows telesales staff to quickly assess and filter leads depending on the likelihood of a good result.
The London-based company has a sizeable sales team whose job is to call potential customers and convert leads to active cases. These are progressed by other teams in the company which act as a go-between between the client and the lender.
Lion Claimline has been in business since 2008. It has grown rapidly in the past three years, particularly since using an online customer relationship and contact management system known as First Contact. The company now handles thousands of claims each year.
“Originally we managed all of our leads and contacts manually, using paper,” says Hastings Wieloch, telesales manager at the company. “But we soon realised that we were potentially wasting too much time on claims where lenders were unlikely to pay out. To improve our efficiency and deliver a faster result for clients we needed to find a way to filter prospects at the earliest stage, based on our experience of the cases that did or didn’t get results.”
The decision was taken to invest in a proper contact/customer management solution that would give Lion Claimline more control over how it assessed and handled leads, and provide detailed insight into the results of each call and each case.
“In a no-win, no-fee scenario, the ability to assess a claim very quickly is key,” Wieloch explains. “We wanted a way of introducing more consistency into what the telesales team say and do in response to what customers tell them, and to automate as much of this as possible. We also wanted to be able to analyse and report on performance so that we could keep refining our actions to ensure we get more of the business we want.
Lion Claimline chose First Contact, a cloud-based software solution. Because the system is hosted externally, and is presented in a highly visual and intuitive way, the implementation was quick and the software easy to cost-justify. Also, the functionality can be accessed from anywhere – allowing managers to monitor performance and make informed decisions when away from the office.
An even bigger factor in First Contact’s favour is that Lion Claimline managers can modify the workflow and script to alter staff prompts and actions quickly and easily, without having to go back to the software developer and host, DCSL. “The system is incredibly fluid and malleable,” Wieloch comments. “If we identify that something isn’t working, or want to try a slightly different approach, we can enter new criteria and new questions instantly, giving us complete control. This means we can keep improving our results without having to retain staff or rewrite the software.”
Depending on the responses a prospect gives on the phone, the First Contact system will direct the telesales agent to ask particular follow-on questions to further screen the lead, establish if they have enough information to progress a claim or, if the prospect chooses not to pursue a claim, find out why.
The ability to delve into the detail of sales and claims performance is of particular interest to Hasting Wieloch at Lion Claimline. “To continue to grow and become more efficient, it is important that we learn from both positive and negative outcomes and feed back this performance along the chain,” he says. “For example we recently identified that, despite having filed 50 claims with one particular lender, we had never won any of the cases, so now we have set our upfront processes to ensure we decline cases involving that organisation at the earliest opportunity.”
Lion Claimline has listed as many as 20 different categories of conversion or negative conversion. Wieloch, who likes statistics, is especially preoccupied with the cases the company doesn’t win or isn’t able to take on. “Where customers decline to start an application, my aim is to understand why so we can use this to improve our processes,” he says. “As a result of our analyses, and of fine-tuning what we do in such cases, we saw conversions go up from 63% to 74%. That’s impressive.”
Another clear result the company hopes to achieve in the coming weeks is a saving of 45 days in the time it takes to process a claim, Wieloch says. “We are about to change our process so that if we establish early on that a prospect has adequate information to progress a claim, we file it there and then. We can then track the results. If it works well, we will be able to adjust what we ask new leads – for example, if the only bottleneck has been a missing account number we can ask for this up front.”
Wieloch believes that with any other contact or CRM system, being able to introduce such changes would be a long, slow and costly process as the underlying workflow is amended. With First Contact, a change is no sooner thought of than done.
He is also impressed with the scope of reporting that is possible with First Contact. “There are three levels to it – an online dashboard display highlighting the key findings; fuller, more detailed reporting; and then the ability to export the data,” he notes. “We have used all three facilities across our different departments and still haven’t pushed the system to its limits, which is exciting as it means there are even more savings to be had!”
One of the biggest benefits so far is that Lion Claimline can handle more claims without increasing its headcount - because staff are more efficient and management decisions can be made promptly, based on “really good management information”.
Wieloch is so persuaded by the system that he has been evangelising about First Contact internally, and hopes to see it replace other CRM systems used elsewhere in the organisation. “With any other CRM system you would never get all of the analytics I can get from First Contact,” he says. “You’d have to pay someone to get the level of detail I can get from this system, and the fact that we can mould the system so effortlessly to do what we want is priceless. I’d definitely recommend First Contact. I’d also use it again in other industries.”
The fact that we can mould the system so effortlessly to do what we want is priceless. I’d definitely recommend First Contact.
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