“Our goal was to automate as many customer journeys as possible, to reduce the number of phone calls and contact with agents, but above all to make it a flawless customer journey to get them the right answer as quickly as possible.”

 

— Liz Martin, Customer Advocacy Manager, Paymentshield

6%
Conversions increased overall
100%
Requests handled at least partially through automation
82%
Requests resolved fully by automated bots
57%
Average cancellations have reduced by 57%

Paymentshield, one of the UK’s leading insurance intermediaries, operates under a rather simple principle — we’re obsessed with customer service. It’s this company-wide belief that forced Paymentshield to reconsider its existing customer support journey at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Overview:

Paymentshield, one of the UK’s leading insurance intermediaries, operates under a rather simple principle — we’re obsessed with customer service. It’s this company-wide belief that forced Paymentshield to reconsider its existing customer support journey at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The company recognized the need to prioritize its customer service during a time when fear and uncertainty were at their peak, both from the perspective of customers and internal insurance administrators. But could the team really find a solution that modernized the customer success journey and successfully implement it in a remote work environment to champion their customers and internal agents?

That’s what Liz Martin and the rest of the customer success team pondered on their journey to Helpshift. And immediately upon implementation, those fears dissolved. In the first full calendar year of utilizing a variety of Helpshift’s solutions, Paymentshield fully automated more than 20,000 inquiries, saving a total of 3,500 hours and improving customer satisfaction to 4.25. Learn how below!

Introduction:

As one of the UK’s leading insurance administration and distribution companies, Paymentshield works with the UK’s leading insurance providers to deliver premium products and services to insurance brokers, advisers, and individual clients.

Having always prioritized its customer success, Paymentshield needed to digitally transform itself and modernize its customer support journey to mitigate as many fears and uncertainties as possible amid the COVID-19 pandemic. They turned to Helpshift to develop a customized support solution using a number of automated solutions, including Smart Intents, self-service FAQ, automated chatbots, and more.

The Challenge:

Paymentshield’s customer support offering is unique in that their insurance administrators also serve as customer support representatives. Whenever their customers have specific questions — from making changes to their insurance policy to filing a claim — their representative is their first line of communication.

This resulted in an inundation of calls and emails to insurance administrators who were forced to manually assist clients experiencing a variety of issues. Not only did this take time away from their job, but it also slowed down the customer support journey as clients were forced to sit in a telephony queue for an extended amount of time or wait multiple days for email responses.

As the company saw more and more inquiries arise throughout the initial months of the pandemic, it recognized the need to adopt digital support capabilities that automated the support journey, decreased resolution time, and ultimately improved customer satisfaction.

“Our goal was to automate as many customer journeys as possible, to reduce the number of phone calls and contact with agents, but above all to make it a flawless customer journey to get them the right answer as quickly as possible.”

— Liz Martin, Customer Advocacy Manager, Paymentshield

The Solution:

Paymentshield partnered with Helpshift to customize solutions for both of its client segments — policyholders and insurance brokers. Policyholders needed access to a robust knowledge base and in-app FAQ module to improve self-service capabilities and automate more resolutions before going directly to their representative. Meanwhile, insurance brokers needed the ability to chat with representatives virtually in real-time while speaking to their clients on the phone.

With these needs identified, Paymentshield utilized Smart Intents to implement 30 user-facing bot journeys to direct users down an automated self-service workflow. The information provided in these bot journeys offers customers general policy information, (i.e. are the contents in my garage covered in my insurance?) along with guidance on how to access their documents online and discuss new or existing claims.

By utilizing Smart Intents as the basis for 90% of support journeys, Paymentshield maximized its ability to automate resolutions and offer self-service opportunities to clients who prioritized speedy resolution. During Q1 2022 issues with intents had a CSAT of 3.96 and issues without intents had a CSAT of 3.76.

After initially implementing these solutions in July 2020, Paymentshield quickly realized its ability to dig deeper into Helpshift’s product suite:

  • In-App Feedback Bots — Paymentshield’s previous feedback solution was very limited in its functionality, only allowing customers to leave star ratings with no hard feedback. The company took advantage of Helpshift’s in-app feedback bots to improve feedback collection (both from a usability and information standpoint) and began using this specific feedback to improve processes. “The feedback bot allows us to gather more detailed feedback, particularly for customers who might have had a bad experience. It also gives us the opportunity to re-open the chat if the customers query hasn’t been resolved.” — James Scholes Operational Support User, Paymentshield
  • After-Hours Chat — Paymentshield wanted to offer support outside of normal working hours. After using chatbots for a number of months, they created custom issue fields to split workflows and bot journeys to ‘during hours’ and ‘out of hours.’ This allowed them to answer queries through deflections and bots even when an agent was unavailable.

“We trialed a number of suppliers and Helpshift was the one that best suited our needs. The fact that journeys could easily be built in-house from an operational rather than an IT perspective was hugely appealing. We can focus on making the journey the best we can from a customer perspective without having to worry too much about the £s per journey, which is liberating and proof that Helpshift’s ethos is aligned with our own.”

— Liz Martin, Customer Advocacy Manager, Paymentshield

The Success:

In the first week of implementing Helpshift’s solutions, Paymentshield received 496 requests, 100% of which were handled at least partially through automation. 92% of the issues were created via Smart Intents, driving 463 FAQ views and creating more self-service opportunities than ever before. Ultimately, 82% of the issues were fully resolved by custom bots, resulting in an average resolution time of 3.26 minutes.

After such a successful first week of implementation, Paymentshield only continued to build on its success. When it released the automated chat function in July 2020, bots handled 1,927 queries, or about 12% of overall contact. However, in December 2021, that number jumped to 5,814 queries — a staggering 36% of overall contact!

Since July 2020 the demand has increased without increasing telephony activity, they have seen a reduction in telephony channel whilst increasing demand.

Since Helpshift was deployed, contracts cancellations have fallen (average cancellations have reduced by 57% since inception of Helpshift – 938 on average less per month), retentions have remained steady, yet conversions have increased (on average by 1.84% since inception which is 6% increase overall on the previous 18 months prior to Helpshift).

Paymentshield is now funneling away the non-retainable cancellations that they can do nothing with and providing their retention team with better opportunities to retain because of the quality of opportunity now coming through – that is why cancellations have dropped overall.

In 2021 as a whole, Paymentshield serviced over 3,000 fully automated chats just from customers looking to discuss a new or existing claim with their insurer, equating to over 340 hours saved. The result is a combination of happy employees who are able to handle more meaningful requests and quicker resolution times that improve customer satisfaction, which jumped to an all-time high of 4.25 in January 2022.

“[Our agents] are absolutely loving it. It’s been a great way to engage differently with customers and handle 2 or 3 calls at a time … Helpshift has allowed us to maximize self-serve capability for customers which is something we haven’t been able to realize via telephony and email communication channels.”

By The Numbers (1 Week Post-Implementation)

496 — Total requests received
100% — Percentage of requests handled at least partially through automation
82% — Percentage of requests resolved fully by automated bots
3.26 minutes — Average resolution time

By The Numbers (2021)

340 — Total hours saved on inquiries related to a new or existing claim
36% — Percentage of total inquiries that utilize automated chat
4.25 — Current CSAT score to begin 2022
6% — Conversions increased since Helpshift by 6%
57% — Average cancellations have reduced by 57%