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From an Operations & Customer Service Perspective: Managing Lockdown due to Covid-19 Outbreak

KV Dipu, Head – Operations & Customer Service, Bajaj Allianz General Insurance shares the steps taken by the company to continue to serve the customers post-lockdown

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Lockdown due to Covid-19 outbreak has brought along a lot of learnings for organizations across sectors. Such crisis like situations don’t ask you before coming, hence corporates need to be prepared in advance assuming things can go topsy-turvy anytime without them having any control. At Bajaj Allianz General Insurance, our aim has always been to be there for our customers whenever they needs us, which is rightly portrayed in our tagline ‘Caringly yours’. We strive towards enhancing their experience with us by providing them with necessary solutions.

Once we learnt that Covid-19 cases in India are increasing, we started working on improving our efficiency in terms of operations and customer services, considering that other countries were already under a lockdown which could happen soon in our country as well. Hence, we conducted a work from home drill on March 19 & 20 at our headquarters in Pune to test our preparedness. Based on our learnings, below are few steps we took to ensure serving our customers without any disruption.

Infrastructure & Communication
Work from home concept was new to our company and hence we had to cater to minutest scenarios for our employees like checking system availability, assess existing system for glitch when exposed to multiples of their regular loads. To ensure seamless login from home, VPN was checked on the systems and IT teams were on standby to support teams across.

Communication was sent to customers encouraging them to reach out to us on our website/app/call centre and make payment of premium using digital modes. Employees and intermediaries were informed to leverage digital platforms to issue policies, servicing and registering claims. Our call centres were moved to outbound from inbound as contact centres were affected. This also brought in opportunity for us to introduce our Whatsapp chat and missed call features to reach customer which enabled faster resolution of their queries.

Managing network load
Network loads shift under the work from home scenario. Hence, we had to test each applications from customer facing to employee facing. For instance, in terms employees, ISP capacity may come in to play. Hence, minimum capacity was prescribed and every employee was asked to increase the capacity. Should performance for remote work suffer, employees have been given tips to improve the capacity especially in collaboration tools like video conferencing wherein employees can turn off video during a call or even route audio to their phone.

Sharing of best practices
The nature of work changes when your teams are no longer sitting together. We have a number of remote working tools, including regular community time for all teams as well as a block every day where there’s a call/bridge everyone on the team connects to, and people can call in to talk as available, get small things resolved and just catch up. Similarly, electricity cuts were noted due to load shedding in some areas, considering the same employees are asked to work on shifts to avoid this problem.

Employee engagement
Lockdown has changed the way we work and it has also had an impact on everyone emotionally. To keep the employees happy and provide regular motivation, we have launched a programme ‘Celebrating you’which involves engagement activities for employees as well as their families. Online training on mobile platform was introduced where employees can enhance their knowledge levels.

This lockdown has certainly transformed how organizations function, it hence important to adapt and stay relevant to sustain and be there to serve your customers. We are the people who customers turn to in their direst hours of need, lockdown or not, we will be there for them!

Authored by By KV Dipu, Head – Operations & Customer Service, Bajaj Allianz General Insurance (KV Dipu writes regularly on the topic of InsureTech, for Expresscomputer.in. You can read his articles here)


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