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May 21 2018

The handling of auto insurance claims has continued to improve from a consumer perspective, with relatively simple steps that can be completed predominantly online or through mobile applications. Many insurance providers, such as yourselves, have done an excellent job building out resources to help walk consumers, both policyholders and claimants, through each step for submitting a claim as well as educating the consumer in regard to expectations following a claim submission.

It’s important to make sure your internal claims processes are also living up to their potential! If you’re not already leveraging a vehicle data provider, or your current data provider only offers a limited amount/scope of vehicle details and specs, your business could greatly benefit from a comprehensive vehicle data solution.

In this post, we’ve included some of the ways in which a commercial vehicle data provider could help improve your internal auto insurance claims processes.

1. Properly identify the damaged vehicle

In the beginning stages of the auto insurance claim process, it’s essential that you leverage a complete and accurate vehicle data solution to properly identify the damaged vehicle and its characteristics. This is especially true for claimants submitting a claim about one of your policyholders involved in the accident, as you will most likely already have the information on hand for your insured's vehicles.

2. Improve accuracy of damage estimates

Whether you use internal adjusters to conduct estimates or allow the vehicle owner to get a quote from their shop of preference, referencing VIN-specific vehicle parts pricing data is a great way to improve the speed and accuracy of your reviewing process. Not everyone will choose a repair center within your preferred network, though it’d be the ideal situation. Minimize the amount of money lost from your insured drivers’ at-fault accidents by preventing inaccurate repair quotes.

3. Help refine thresholds for total loss claims

As vehicles continue to advance in technology, the criteria for determining total loss has become increasingly more complex. Certain vehicle components that were once inexpensive to fix, such as a bumper, are now some of the costliest repairs. Precise identification of the vehicle and understanding the standard features and variances on optional equipment is key to the development of profitable ratings and triggers for total loss decisions.

4. Access vehicle valuation tools by VIN

You are probably already working with a vehicle valuation data provider, such as Kelley Blue Book or NADA, to determine when vehicles are a total loss and what the vehicles are worth for a cash settlement. However, you may be doing a little extra work to tie the vehicle information provided by the vehicle owner to the appropriate vehicle valuation information. This method can leave room for error.

What’s nice about a commercial vehicle data and VIN decoding provider, including DataOne, is that they offer mapping to these 3rd party data standards so you can reference valuation data by VIN. This will eliminate any discrepancies in the value of the totaled vehicle and will help assure that you are not overpaying or underpaying the claimant or their auto lender.

In summary, utilizing a comprehensive vehicle data solution is an effective way to assure your insurance company is properly identifying the vehicles claimed, as well as provide accurate damage estimates or valuations for totaled vehicles. Selecting the right data provider won’t just improve your claims process but can be leveraged to improve the quoting and underwriting processes as well.

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