Using Technology to Help Homeowners Begin to Rebuild After a Property Loss
Most homeowners know how fickle Mother Nature can be. From hurricanes and hailstorms to wildfires, sometimes there's little you can do to avoid the risk of property damage and loss.
That’s the frightening situation Malibu, California homeowners faced in 2018 when a wildfire destroyed more than 400 single-family homes. Yet, as the fire raged, a team in the Travelers catastrophic response command center in Connecticut was carefully monitoring details about the event. By leveraging the power of advanced weather mapping technology and real-time data, Travelers stayed updated on the status of the disaster.
After the event, Travelers was able to obtain and analyze aerial imagery that allowed its Claim professionals to identify damaged homes and contact affected policyholders to inform them about their loss.
Technology Drives Proactive Customer Service
Any property loss can feel catastrophic to a homeowner — no matter if it results in a minor repair or a complete rebuild. Supporting the homeowner immediately upon the report of a loss and providing a compassionate claim experience that is as smooth and efficient as possible is vitally important.
That’s why Travelers has invested in an advanced technology infrastructure to enhance human connectivity and support. It’s all part of Travelers' promise to care for its policyholders through science, data and heart.
In an effort to better meet the needs of its policyholders, Travelers begins utilizing technological tools well before some loss events. While no one can predict with certainty the path or seriousness of many storms, technology helps Travelers stay informed about weather events to make sure that appropriate resources are ready to serve policyholders quickly.
Here's how it typically works: Throughout the course of a day, Travelers aggregates weather data from across the country. If the analysis of the data suggests that a weather event is likely to produce property loss, Travelers advanced weather mapping technology helps to create a geographical map identifying where policyholders may be at risk. Using that data, Travelers can mobilize resources ahead of an event, including:
- Alerting its call center about potential incoming claim traffic to ensure enough customer service representatives are available to support the event.
- Activating mobile Claim center personnel to prepare for deployment to the scene.
- Readying our dedicated catastrophe Claim professionals, if necessary.
- Coordinating with local mitigation vendors like tree removal services, roofers and other professionals to make sure they’re ready and able to deliver aid to policyholders.
More importantly, by understanding the impact of a weather event on a specific geographic footprint, Travelers can proactively reach out to policyholders and agents in the area to make sure they’re prepared and understand what to do if they suffer a loss.
Efficiently Deploying Resources
When a large-scale event like a wildfire or storm causes damage, it is critical to prioritize claims to make sure that resources are deployed to those who may be in urgent need first. Using AI and data analytics, Travelers is conducting that triage more efficiently.
Once skies are clear, and often within 24 hours of an event, the Geospatial Intelligence Center (GIC) begins low-altitude flights over the affected areas. Using special cameras mounted to the bottom of airplanes, these flights are able to capture high-resolution imagery of the damage.
Image analytics combined with AI models and a neural network interpret the images to identify properties covered by Travelers. Computer programs then compare those photos to file photos of the properties before the event. This allows Travelers to determine the best course of action. That may include contacting policyholders and informing them of the damage to their property. Travelers can begin the claim process if the policyholder chooses and provide a referral to a contractor if the policyholder wants to protect their property from additional damage.
When damage happens, robotic process automation, machine learning and Travelers Claim professionals' expertise all combine for efficient claim handling. That can mean a claim that previously took weeks now can be resolved in hours or days, and homeowners can begin getting their homes and their lives back in order.
Coming to the Rescue in Extreme Events
Travelers' advanced technology is a game changer when dealing with extreme events in which numerous policyholders are impacted and may be unable to get back to their homes for weeks. In these situations, Claim professionals may be prevented from accessing the area, leaving homeowners wondering and worrying about the state of their property.
Thanks to the work behind the scenes, Travelers can assess the damage to individual properties without sending a Claim handler to the area. Using text, email and smartphone apps, Travelers Claim professionals can provide information about the condition of a property to the policyholder and begin the claim process quickly if the policyholder chooses to file a claim. By comparing before and after aerial photos and using AI, Travelers can estimate damage, calculate costs to rebuild and quickly help to get a check into a homeowner’s hands.
Combining Technology with Human Empathy
For Travelers, the human touch is constantly informing technological processes. For example, to make the most of machine learning technology, Travelers Claim professionals continually teach machine learning systems the nuances of detecting damage. To analytics software, a construction lot can look an awful lot like a debris pile, and a tree near a roofline can look like impact damage. Travelers professionals work to govern, review and inform the AI systems of important details in order to refine its capabilities.
As Travelers advances its use of emerging technologies to enhance customer service and claim handling, it remembers to balance it with human judgment. And while data and technology drive efficiency when serving policyholders, it’s still the compassionate voice of a Travelers professional on the phone or steady presence on the scene that can make all the difference in the policyholder's experience.
Human interaction means Travelers policyowners can be assured by individual attention to their needs when a property loss occurs. Technological advances make it possible to provide that individual attention quickly after a loss.
Homeowners Coverage with Heart
When the unexpected happens, you can count on Travelers to honor its promise to care through science, data and heart.
Learn more about Travelers homeowners coverage or find a Travelers representative near you.
More Prepare & Prevent
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