MJ Flood Technology, a leading provider of e-Business solutions to small and medium-sized enterprises, today announced that it has designed and deployed a nationwide network of virtual offices for Insurance Loss Adjusters, ProAdjust. By providing field-based Loss Adjusters with the speed and performance of connectivity traditionally associated with office-based solutions, ProAdjust can extend the reach of its adjusting and surveying service, offering clients a dynamic, innovative alternative on a nationwide basis. Using this unique business model, ProAdjust has recorded revenues exceeding targets in its first year of operation and impressive productivity levels for staff.
As a start-up operation in an extremely competitive environment, the management team at ProAdjust was mindful of delivering a quality service while controlling costs. “The concept of establishing virtual offices not only yields broad market coverage and minimises operating costs but also offers clients a more responsive claims service,” commented Mitch Wallis, Operations Director, ProAdjust. “Equipped with laptop computer, digital camera and digital dictation device, each Loss Adjuster can use the benefits of mobile technology to maximise time spent on-site.”
Broadband connectivity from home means that field-based staff can quickly upload or download information pertinent to each claim with high speed access to all corporate resources and ProAdjust’s insurance claims application, PACS.* This negates the need for staff to spend valuable time travelling to the office and in their experience, results in far greater employee productivity and a more responsive customer service.”
Speed of implementation was the real project challenge for MJ Flood Technology as Sales Director, James Finglas explains. “We had a narrow two-week window in which to source and deploy all back-office infrastructure as well as enable the mobile workforce to seamlessly connect to ProAdjust’s corporate resources.” The network infrastructure consists of three IBM servers, two of which are located at headquarters in Dublin and one in the Sligo office. A webserver houses the PACS application, which is used by internal staff and as an online portal for ProAdjust’s clients. Windows 2003 active directory runs Lotus Domino, which provides the claim processing functionality.
“Offering Extranet services to customers put security concerns high on the list of design criteria,” explains James Finglas. “We used a combination of sophisticated firewall technology as a perimeter defence together with desktop Anti-Virus (AV) protection for each staff member. Connectivity to the corporate Local Area Network (LAN) is independent of media-type and can facilitate both broadband and ISDN, where broadband services are as yet unavailable.”
Using the concept of virtual offices, ProAdjust has been able to exceed Service Level Agreements with Insurers as Mitch Wallis explains. “The virtual office environment has allowed us to locate our adjusting staff where our business spread requires them to be without the costs associated with setting up a physical office. The importance to us of having staff located throughout the country reflects our proactive client approach and underpinned our successful performance in our first year of operations. We could not have achieved this without the valuable contribution from MJ Flood Technologies. Its staff demonstrated technical expertise as well as sound business acumen and an in-depth understanding of our operating environment.”