In the quest to gain a competitive advantage in today's aggressive marketplace, insurers can overlook a valuable asset already in their possession: auto repair claims servicing information. By putting analytics to work in this area, insurers can improve all aspects of the auto repair claims servicing process from appraisals through the repair costs to claim payments. With careful monitoring of the insurer's relationship with repair service providers, it's not just the bottom line that improves, but also experiences by clients.

Three main areas stand out for optimizing with analytics: appraisals, body shop management, and parts and labor. Using analytics to focus on these areas with information already available to the insurer will lower costs, enhance relationships and improve service. In addition, claims managers obtain a better overall picture and are more informed and ready to extrapolate future trends.

In the area of appraisals, analytics provide claims managers with the ability to assess the overall performance of all types of service providers from employees through external contractors to the body shop workers. Metrics of special interest in this area include the time required to complete an estimate, the number of supplements and/or revisions required, the distribution of estimates between regular and preferred body shops, and the like. With this information at their fingertips, claims managers can improve appraiser-related activities and structure their information and relationships more effectively.

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