What does a claims assessor do?
Our claims assessors play a vital role – ensuring we give the best possible service to customers throughout the claims process, from the submission of forms to the end of assessment and beyond. As part of this, they ensure that you can submit all documents required in the easiest possible way. In addition, they check that:
- your claim form has been completed and signed;
- your statement of accounts, invoices, delivery notes and evidence of work completed have been supplied; and
- your justification for trading under the discretionary limit, if there isn’t a limit in place, is included.
They also ensure that you have taken all necessary action to recover the debt. Obviously, if you have opted in to our collection services, our collectors will handle the loss mitigation, removing what could be a potential headache.
Alternatively, if your policy isn’t inclusive of collection, we can offer advice as soon as you submit a claim to let you know the steps required to ensure the debt is mitigated properly.
And, as claims assessors have access to the collection system they can even start to pre-assess your claim. This is particularly useful in cases of protracted default as they can start work before the deadline to submit.
One of our key team members is Sarah Marable. Working for Euler Hermes is almost a family tradition for her. She started in the Collections team in 2008 after her mum, who’s been with us for more than 35 years, encouraged her to join the company. Sarah worked in several areas of the business before joining our Claims team in 2016.
“Claims assessment is a technical role,” says Sarah, “and all recruits receive six months’ in-house training to ensure customers get the best service. This involves learning about all the different policies and the fundamentals of assessing a claim.”
Additional training is available and Sarah has taken advantage of it. “The Risk Department took us through what they do to help us understand their processes and I’ve recently completed a three-day export course that helped us to understand more about how some of our customers work.”
However, Sarah emphasises the importance of the expertise that client claims assessors develop on the job, too: “You learn on an ongoing basis from examining new claims,” she says.
The expertise that Sarah has acquired during the decade that she has worked for us is proving useful during the current busy period in the Claims and Collections team. “I always try to help our newer assessors as much as possible,” she says.
Peace of mind for businesses
Asked what she finds most challenging about her role, Sarah replies: “At the moment, it’s volume. There’s an increase in insolvencies and non-payment of debt, so it’s more of a challenge to manage our portfolios and respond to customers and brokers, as we don’t just respect our service level agreements but try to go beyond them.”
“The highest payout I’ve personnally seen so far has been €700,000.” But Sarah believes this high figure could soon be beaten: “With the number and value of claims at the moment, that amount might be topped.”
This rise in insolvencies and non-payment of debt makes the work of Sarah and other client assessors even more valuable.
Sarah is only too aware of this. “Throughout the 10 years I’ve worked here, I’ve realised the importance of credit insurance and how it assists businesses with their cash flow,” she says. “We’re able to provide peace of mind through credit insurance and predictive protection, which is massively important at times like this.
“In case of insolvency, we can also help our customers as we have access to a panel of insolvency practitioners and can ensure the correct documents have been passed on to them.”
Working in partnership
“It’s rare for us to reject a claim (4%),” says Sarah. “And when it happens it’s usually because of late reporting. Reporting within the deadline is essential as this information informs our knowledge about companies. Late reporting also affects our ability to collect on time or give our opt out customers recommendations to collect .”
We don’t rely solely on published accounts. Statistics on late reporting and information collated from the many meetings we hold with companies to grade their clients also play a role.
“It’s a two-way process,” explains Sarah. “Customers provide us with information and we tap into our network to provide information on their clients. That way we are able to offer predictive protection instead of solely paying out claims.”
“Customers are often unsure if they have included all the appropriate paperwork when submitting a claim. We know it can be a stressful time and so we’re trying to make things as easy as possible. We recently interviewed a group of customers to identify any ‘pain points’ and are reviewing the findings to see if we can make improvements.”
The highlight for Sarah comes at the end of the process. “It can seem daunting but once you’ve got to the end of it and you can tell customers, ‘It’s OK, we’re paying the claim,’ it’s such a nice feeling to give them peace of mind.
“You can see the relief in their responses. You realise we’ve made a huge difference to their outlook.”
For more information about the documentation required when submitting a claim, click here.