When BCS clients are asked why they chose BCS over their previous solution, their responses all boil down to one thing: BCS delivers meaningful results in a way that other solutions do not. So what is it that keeps so many organizations from getting the results they want from other service providers? Do other providers have a software problem? A personnel problem? Or do organizations simply get what they pay for? Could it also be that organizations fail to define what results they want until after they get started? These might sound like obvious suggestions if things did not work out. A not so obvious explanation is that a service provider’s DNA can actually undermine the success of a certificate of insurance (COI) tracking program.
DNA is the set of instructions used in development and functioning. In addition to our own, we’ve identified three common ‘DNA strands’ among COI tracking and vendor screening service providers:
1. The Software Strand
2. The Insurance Strand
3. The Safety Strand
A service provider with the software strand has strengths in automating manual processes. When collecting and storing COIs, these providers use their programming expertise and skills to excel. The software strand makes the administrative benefits of outsourcing COI tracking so appealing, that the thought of administrative relief might tempt one to forget, that the primary reason for outsourcing COI tracking should not be administrative relief. Clients, who previously used and were dissatisfied with the software strand, share with BCS that the major deficiencies of this strand are: the lack of human touch and an oversimplification of the solution. Automated deficiency notices often keep vendors and agents in an unproductive do-loop, sending the service provider non-compliant COIs over-and-over again in response to ineffective, computer generated deficiency notices. Because they view software as a service, these providers underestimate the importance of a dedicated account team, which means less effective communication at nearly all levels. Oversimplification means many of the right questions never get asked during implementation, and organizations are forced to fit into the parameters of the software. The truth is, the software strand doesn’t help organizations transfer loss, which is the only real reason for tracking COIs in the first place. Enter the insurance strand.
The insurance strand is found among service providers who were insurance agents or brokers. While this group should have an excellent understanding of insurance and COI requirements, they are also the group who issues deficient COIs. It’s tempting to assume that insurance agents would naturally make good COI tracking service providers. This may not be true.
Insurance is a fundamental economic tool. Without it, how many of us would drive a car, board an airplane, or borrow money for a home? Insurance companies are in the business of helping us take calculated risks; but they are also in the business of not paying claims. A recent study by one of the top five accounting firms revealed that 70% of the COIs issued by agents/brokers are non-compliant when audited for accuracy. When it comes to DNA—the set of instructions used in development and functioning—there is a clear conflict of interest between those who issue COIs and those who audit them for compliance.
If a company intelligently rules out the software strand and the insurance strand, there is still another option that may catch their attention–the safety strand. This strand is found among the large, one-size-fits-all vendor qualification solutions. These providers often include insurance as part of a larger safety-focused solution.
One of the most common complaints we hear from organizations that have been enticed by this model is that the one-size-fits-all-solution didn’t fit them, or more importantly, it didn’t fit their vendors. Vendors end up paying large annual registration fees, and because their requirements vary among multiple hiring organizations, the concept of an annual registration fee doesn’t make much sense. Furthermore, many of these service providers specialize in safety screening and simply outsource the COI tracking to a software or insurance strand in the end.
If transferring loss is the number one reason to track COIs, the only logical solution is to use someone with a DNA not listed above. Enter BCS.
BCS protects organizations by collecting and correcting vendor insurance and other self-reported data. Our DNA is the risk-management strand. The set of instructions we use in development and functioning requires us to focus on every detail, to ask all the tough questions, to listen intently, and to think strategically as we layout a customized COI tracking program for each unique client.
Our motivation to create great software is the result of our need to track the human activities and work-flows we use to bring about compliance. And rather than a conflict of interest, we assign each client a dedicated team, which becomes intimately familiar with their rules, requirements, exceptions, waivers, communication protocols, and virtually every aspect of the process. Instead of asking our clients and their vendors to conform to our way of doing things, we customize our solution to fit what they are already doing. Because of this, BCS clients never get stuck paying for services they don’t need or use, while vendors and brokers often say how happy they are that BCS is the one calling them and not “that other service provider.”
If you think the risk management strand is right for you, please visit us online at www.bcsaudit.com, or call us at (862) 242-5494 for a free consultation.