South Western Group and International Programs Group provide top-notch claims services

Feb 2017

Here at the South Western Group (SWG), we take our claims very seriously. That’s why we choose to align with International Programs Group (IPG). Partnering with IPG allows us to maximize our efficiency and understand our business more fully. All the benefits reaped from this partnership end up going directly to you, our Brokers and your clients (the Insureds). We’re about to tell you a little more about IPG and how partnering with them delivers the best claim experience for our clients.

Who is IPG?

IPG is Canada’s largest Lloyds TPA (third party administrator), which means it’s composed of the nation’s most comprehensive network of adjusting firms. They employ service providers — including lawyers, engineers, contractors, and surveyors — to create a refined and customized business environment. IPG examiners are trained to oversee a variety of lines and are licensed in all Canadian jurisdictions. Their technical focus and attention to detail, provide clients with confidence in the claims experience. IPG’s parent company, SCM is renowned for their insurance services; they were ranked best in Industry at the 2016 Insurance Business Canada Awards. As a result of this total ownership, IPG benefits from all the capabilities SCM (the largest insurance service providers in Canada) has to offer. They have relationships with a majority of syndicates that currently operate in Canada.

Why Does SWG Partner with IPG?

South Western Group CEO John Barclay puts it best: “If you’re going to be in the claims business… you better be in it full-on, because you are representing the insurer in the intake, management, and stewardship of the claim.” He describes the decision as an intuitive one, since he “wanted SWG to focus on receiving, assessing, [and underwriting] submissions from our broker channel”. He stresses that IPG was selected through an extensive research process that eventually determined that SCM would be an ideal partner for SWG. When asked about the concrete benefits of outsourcing claims, he explains that the situation comes down to specialization. The partnership with IPG and SCM ensures that South Western Group has more flexibility to find the expert advice that will be most beneficial to our clients. Three more major concrete benefits of this partnership are:

  1. INDEPENDENCE:IPG is a TPA. When they need an independent adjuster in the field, they look for professionals with the required specific expertise.
  2. FLEXIBILITY:SWG represents multiple domestic insurers and a broad range of Lloyd’s syndicates. Each one has different/existing relationships with adjusters. IPG respects these relationships provided that they comply with the necessary requirements of the syndicates and insurers.
  3. INNOVATION & TECHNOLOGYIPG supports Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT) to reduce wait times for payments and materialize cost savings from the issuance and delivery of paper cheques.SWG’s investment in technology is focused on the insurance underwriting management side; IPG’s Claims Management system can deliver SWG with best-in-class claims and risk management data that is extremely valuable to our business.IPG’s sister company, Opta Information Intelligence, focus on predictive analytics and data management that helps SWG better understand business and claims risk.
  4. The Claim Process

After we receive a broker’s claim notification, IPG contacts all parties to determine what course of action would best fit the situation. If the claim needs an independent adjuster, they’ll sort out the logistics of that situation and assign as appropriate. IPG oversees the complete claim process in order to make sure there aren’t any slip-ups or unresolved complications. Finally, IPG makes payments from their Trust Funds to satisfy indemnity and expense payments.

Benefits of working with IPG

For the broker: Product management, development and underwriting management on behalf of the insurer are all essential parts of the way we do business here at the SWG. IPG and SCM just offer our clients more diversity when it comes to finding solutions for insurance claim management. The great diversity of experiences and expertise we can draw on through this partnership will help our brokers — rain or shine. For the insured: Our partnership with IPG and SCM means that for the insured, our claims intake process will be simple and straightforward. IPG will keep the insured well informed with automated notifications so they know who’s handling their claim, what’s going on, and when it’s closed. They can set up these notifications to include as much or as little detail as the customer wishes. For the insurer: South Western Group’s fast and thorough claims process doesn’t just benefit the insured – it benefits the insurer as well. We focus on timeliness, efficiency and proactive claims management in order to administer payments quickly and keep the entire process running smoothly. Disputes are minimal, and if they occur, we work to resolve them quickly. SWG’s decision to partner with IPG and (by extension) SCM is one that can only improve the services our company offers to our Brokers and Insureds. We’ve been provided with a host of highly specialized professionals experienced in every facet of the insurance claim process. We’re taking these innovative benefits and funneling them straight into our product portfolio — we’re seeking to maximize everything that our brokers, insureds, and insurers value. We are proud of what we do and deliver, and you’d probably like to see it in action. Check out our website or give us a call; we look forward to working with you!