We’re moving through hurricane season, and once again it’s been a quiet catastrophe year. Thirty-one events have led to insured losses of only $11.2 billion across 39 states and two Canadian provinces, as of Aug. 31, 2015. But while it’s true that year-to-date catastrophe losses for large events are well below the 10-year average of $17.6 billion, these events have certainly made an impact. High levels of smaller catastrophe activity have had earnings ramifications across the industry, underscoring the importance of efficient and cost-effective catastrophe claims management practices.

Executive Summary

Long hours away from home under stressful conditions are common for adjusters responding to catastrophes, but approaches to managing and compensating catastrophe personnel vary across geographies, company size and employee rank, according to a PCS survey. AVP Joe Louwagie provides some key takeaways, emphasizing that clear communication on comp practices is crucial.

Following a catastrophe event, insurers focus on protecting their balance sheets, market share and reputations. And of course they need to protect their people. How a company manages its staff when responding to a catastrophe has implications for employee engagement, which itself directly affects the quality of claims service provided to those suffering losses. Catastrophe management practices can also influence financial and nonfinancial performance metrics for an entire company, not to mention a broader set of human resources objectives, such as performance and talent management.

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