Computer Aided Design Case Study: How Heartland Insurance Boosts Sales and Productivity using Mobile CAD
Meet Heartland Mutual Insurance
Heartland Mutual Insurance has managed to cut down it’s inspection time by a whopping 60% while also increasing sales, all with the help of our mobile CAD solution, ArcSite. How did they do it? We spoke with Glenn Cole, an inspector from the company, to find out…
Heartland is responsible for insuring farm and homes throughout Illinois. What does the typical insurance project look like? Every time a new quote for insurance is created, whether that is for expanding existing coverage or brand new coverage, the sales agent requests an inspection of the property.
This is where Glenn comes in. He creates the blueprint of the site for the underwriter, who then prepares the best possible quote for the company. Glenn likens his role to that of “painting the picture for the underwriter to see”. Glenn spends as much time on the field as in the office. This typically translates to 4 – 5 inspections a day. Each site can have anywhere between 5 – 15 buildings, so he spends multiple hours on a single site collecting data. This data is then converted into a report back at the office for the underwriter to see.
Glenn’s Old Work Process… And Why It Didn’t Work
What went into making one of Glenn’s reports?
For starters, there were his tools: a digital camera, a sketchbook for drawings, and an Excel spreadsheet that also doubled up as a form. Glenn collected all data into a single Excel spreadsheet. Filling a cramped long spreadsheet proved to be cumbersome; especially when Glenn’s job could be performed much better with a form.
What’s more, he had the same set of data points to collect, irrespective of the type of building. His drawings were mostly hand-sketched and the pictures he took were later transferred into a Microsoft Doc. Clearly, this was not the most efficient way for him to function! Well, these redundant methods posed several problems for the company.
To begin with, Glenn had problems recollecting which data came from which site, as he had 4-5 inspections a day. What’s more, the company used only one form (the one they’ve been using since the 70s) for all types of field data.
This form consisted of only basic questions and was not customized as per type of inspection. This meant sometimes Glenn collected way too much information, and at other times, he fell short of data.
This posed problems when figuring out the value of different types of buildings on a site. For instance, on a farm with 4 different types of buildings such as a machine shop, stable, grain bin, etc. he had to use a long drawn out process for determining it’s value price. This included using the data collected on the single, non-specific Excel sheet. Overall, there was a great disconnect between data collection points and data entry points and left plenty of room for human error.
On the other hand, the company suffered repercussions too. Each inspector presented them with different results. Everyone drew the sites differently, they didn’t use similar backgrounds, and sometimes also collected incomplete data. This meant that when it was time to use the data back at the office, it differed from one inspector to another. These issues were resolved once they started using ArcSite, as explained in the next section.
When Heartland merged with another company, their data collection methods were was not as well-defined and it resulted in mistakes. This proved costly for the company.
The inaccurate data would lead to them paying out more money for areas they did not need to cover. Another issue was their data becoming out of date. Since this old process was lengthy and time-consuming and the data was stored in a format that could not be updated easily, it again led to losses for the company.
The Shift to ArcSite and The Results
Being a tech-savvy and curious individual, Glenn was in search of a better way to create inspection reports. That’s when he stumbled upon ArcSite.
The results that Glenn is seeing with ArcSite are phenomenal. The app is easy for him to use, he can collect data more accurately and send results almost immediately, rather than having to wait.
So how did ArcSite change his workflow?
For starters, he now goes to a site, uses Google Maps or his drone to take site photos and then uses these as the starting point. He uses ArcSite for drawing to scale, which is one of the key differentiators of the app. Being amazingly simple to use, this feature saves him from the crude unscaled hand-drawings that he relied on earlier.
He then collects data on each of the buildings present. For convenience, he has collected a separate form for each type of building, so he no longer has to deal with “price evaluation guides” to figure out the valuation of a building. These factors are already built into the form. Since each type of building has a dedicated form, he does not have to deal with less or more data in any case. Where the old process took him roughly 2 hours to get all the data he needed, now he takes only 45 minutes per site.
That’s 60% of his time saved!
After this, he prepares a report for the underwriter. On days that he has only one or two inspections, he can prepare the report on the field itself, from his car. This is especially helpful when a sales agent requests a quick bid.
The quick turnaround saves the company the delay of a half to one day, which in the sales world, can make or break a deal. Faster quotes translate to more sales for the company!
Adopting ArcSite has made his job much simpler, shares Glenn. He does not have to remember everything while on site and get back home to put it all in the report. No complex math problems or inaccurate data.
But the main benefits of ArcSite are enjoyed by the company. Accurate reports lead to better underwriting, which in turn means the company gets to charge more for the policy and avoid paying out more on claims.
Future Plans for Heartland Insurance
While ArcSite has definitely revamped the inspection process for Heartland, Glenn sees its usage expanding into other areas as well. This includes claims and updating of old data.
Claims are on the opposite end of inspections. In this case, an insured member has claimed a problem that they want the company to pay for. This workflow is very similar to the initial inspection, with the same goals.
While investigating claims, the company collects data from the field to figure out if it has to pay out for the claim. By using ArcSite for this process, the underwriter can easily upload existing info and see the changes that have taken place on the site. Accordingly, they can adjust or deny the payout.
The other task where ArcSite can be helpful is redoing old surveys. Heartland wishes to update their existing data every 3 to 5 years. A lot of their data is hand-drawn and hence difficult to update. With ArcSite, they will have a better view of what to cover.
ArcSite will help them create digital records, that can be updated easily. Heartland can see at a glance if things have changed since their last visit. Eventually, this will help cut out unnecessary payouts.
With the help of ArcSite, Heartland was able to revamp their old processes and increase the efficiency of their workflow. Eventually, this helped them boost sales and avoid payouts that were unnecessary. This was the story of one company, but with the right tools, any company can avail of these benefits!
Are you looking to save time and perform better site inspections? Check out our mobile CAD solution, ArcSite, today!