When you’re stranded, injured or at risk abroad there’s one fact that becomes immediately clear – every minute counts.
That’s why the launch of Tangiers International’s customer service smartphone app a year ago heralded a quiet revolution in the way the company handles medical and evacuation cases in remote or dangerous regions the world over.
The app allows users to locate trusted medical service providers, upload crucial documentation, receive security alerts as well as submit and track any eventual claims – in a fraction of the time it would have taken before.
This means that when a crisis occurs – everything from a minor injury to a life-threatening incident – Tangiers’ customers have the tools at their disposal to let the company know fast.
Managing director of Tangiers International Jane Hegeler said: “In the event of an emergency, all they need to do is open their phone, go to the app and press call.”
Since its launch a year ago, the app has been utilised by customers in some of the world’s most far-flung destinations and has proven an invaluable asset where communication infrastructure is poor or non-existent.
From Tangiers’ perspective, meanwhile, it has also allowed claims handlers to deal with incidents in record time.
Jane said: “We instantly get a notification that a new claim has been received. All the information is already live in our system so it’s a much simpler process.
“Before, people would send in printed off claim forms, original receipts and you may even have had several conversations on the phone. Not only does this add to the insured’s time and effort to submit a claim, from a review process It could be quite slow – uploading all the data manually and processing.
“It’s really streamlined the whole process.
Tangiers International operates in some of the world’s most volatile or hard-to-reach regions meaning real-time communication is a primary concern.
The app, developed in-house by Tangiers to ensure bespoke functionality, bypasses the need to rely on local communication channels.
“In somewhere like South Sudan, for example, if a person needs to find a desktop computer to complete an online claims form or look at it on their phone screen, it’s a lot more convoluted and difficult to do,” explained Jane.
“With the app, they just need an internet connection and they are immediately plugged into our system.”
As well as easing customer communication, the app provides a secure method of transferring sensitive information between users and Tangiers, ensuring that data does not fall into the wrong hands.
Using secure cloud-based system allows customers the comfort of knowing that medical, business and location data relating to their claim is not exposed by insecure systems in whichever country they find themselves.
“It’s not only the security aspect,” Jane added. “A large proportion of our insured are travelling for a long period of time and having to submit a claim within a limited period may mean they have to use internet cafés.
“One problem is that many internet cafés will limit the type of information you can access. The app circumvents that problem straight away.”
Because the customer app has been developed specifically to cope with real-world demands, it has been made available as a white-label product to underwriters, brokers and self-insured groups.
As claims handling and crisis response moves further towards its digital future, Tangiers International is proud to be at the forefront.