Customers

GRI Indicators

Customers

Without our customers, there is no Allstate. That simple thought guides all of our customer efforts. We need look no further than our corporate purpose statement to remind ourselves why we do what we do:

We help people realize their hopes and dreams through products and services designed to protect them from life’s uncertainties and to prepare them for the future.

We take our purpose a step further with our strategic vision to reinvent protection and retirement for the consumer. “Reinvent” is a powerful word, but it’s something we’ve been doing since we started selling auto insurance out of the Sears catalog in 1931.

We use the knowledge we’ve gained over the last
81 years to help Allstate customers recover from unexpected losses—and to prevent losses from happening in the first place.

Applying knowledge to help Allstate customers

From showing customers how to help prevent fires—and how to stop them from spreading if they start—to helping them prepare for hurricanes and tornadoes, we work as consumer advocates, not just as an insurance company. Aiding these efforts are our memberships in organizations such as the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety and our involvement with ProtectingAmerica.org, an organization devoted to preparing and protecting America from catastrophe. We also work closely with states on developing and instituting changes to building codes that result in safer homes with roofs that will better withstand wind and hail.

We are working to redesign sections of the allstate.com website to expand our strategy of making our knowledge more available to consumers to help them protect their homes and prevent losses. The site will incorporate activities as simple as changing washing machine hoses and choosing the best roofing materials. The new site will be available by the end of 2013.

A blog which helps people prepare for
the unpredictability of life

Consumers and prospects alike can access a wide variety of valuable information at the Allstate Blog (blog.allstate.com). The blog’s focus is to help people prepare for life’s unpredictability through information and education. The content includes practical advice about auto safety, home maintenance, personal finance, and more. Posts range from how to safely handle a tire blowout to 4 things to hoard for an emergency.

Meeting specific customer needs

At Allstate, our goal is to keep insurance available and affordable for consumers while addressing their unique needs. From the types of vehicles they own, to the levels of coverage they want, to how they prefer to receive advice and assistance, every customer is different. We serve these distinct customer segments with differentiated offerings and enable them to do business with Allstate when, where and how they choose.

  1. Allstate focuses on targeted marketing, product innovation, broad distribution and pricing to serve customers who value the brand and customer service. The marketing program focuses on the importance of a local agency, value, and products and services that meet customer needs. Allstate differentiates itself from competitors by offering a comprehensive range of innovative product options and features, and through product customization such as Allstate Your Choice Auto®, with options that include accident forgiveness, safe driving deductible rewards and a safe driving bonus.
  2. Esurance is the smart choice for today’s Web-savvy customer, offering fast, reliable and straightforward self-services, from shopping to claims. With mobile capabilities for quoting, claims and other services, Esurance makes it easy for customers to take care of their insurance needs on the go.
  3. Encompass serves customers through local independent agents who provide advice, choice, tailored coverage and personal service, including the market-leading Encompass OneSM Elite package policy. This policy includes guaranteed home replacement cost, a policy limit of 200 percent of home replacement cost for all property, unlimited coverage for water backup of sewers and drains, multi-car credit for single-car households with a company car, identity fraud, higher internal limits for many coverages, and worldwide coverage for personal property.
  4. Answer Financial makes it easy for customers to quickly and easily compare features and rates from the multiple carriers Answer Financial represents, either online or by phone. It’s a starting point and, often, the place where consumers purchase insurance. Customers typically reach Answer Financial through a referral from one of its many marketing partners.

Innovative services for a changing world

Allstate is the only provider committed to serving customers with distinct brands and tailored value propositions through all delivery channels.

Homeowners Policy Green Improvement Reimbursement Endorsement

In 2012, we launched a new product that provides incentives to customers to rebuild homes using sustainable materials. In the event of a covered loss, a customer who purchased this endorsement can replace covered damaged or destroyed appliances or equipment with more energy-efficient items and be reimbursed the additional cost incurred to replace them.

The additional reimbursement applies to certain categories of Energy Star® products rated as energy-efficient by the Environmental Protection Agency—appliances and equipment such as washers and refrigerators; computers and electronics; heating and cooling equipment, such as air conditioners and fans; and certain plumbing and building products. These products generally save electricity or water, reducing a home’s environmental impact while lowering homeowners’ utility bills. We continue to offer this feature on a limited basis and intend to expand it to most states by 2014.

Drive Wise®

Introduced in 2011, this usage-based insurance product rewards safe and low-mileage drivers while helping customers better understand their driving behaviors. Policyholders self-install a telematics device within their vehicles that transmits driving data to Allstate. The customer’s driving behavior and total mileage are then used to determine the Drive Wise performance discount. Drive Wise includes a discount simply for enrolling in the program and plugging in the device. Further discounts can be earned at each renewal, based on driving performance. Rates will not go up based on driving scores.

In 2012, we rolled out Drive Wise to seven additional states, bringing telematics technology and potential discounts to participating drivers in a total of 10 states, with six more added by June 2013. As the program grows, we expect customers to see environmental benefits because safe driving behaviors also lead to reduced emissions through greater fuel efficiency.

North Light Specialty Insurance Company.

North Light Specialty Insurance Company offers personal lines property coverage on a non-admitted basis for unique, underserved customer segments or those residing in high-risk markets such as hurricane-, wildfire- or earthquake-prone regions. An Allstate-owned company, North Light combines quality insurance from a well-known and established insurance group with the efficiency and high-quality service of Allstate’s claims service centers. In 2012, we expanded access to North Light to 23 new states, bringing the total number of active states to 30.

Continual enhancements to Allstate claims service

Allstate processes some 6 million claims a year, and nearly half of the company’s employees are dedicated to claims activities. Because of the vital importance of our claims service to our customers, we are continually developing new approaches to making the process better and more efficient for them.

Mobile Claim Centers

Our Claims team operates a fleet of Mobile Claim Centers that are deployed to severely damaged areas to serve policyholders affected by catastrophic events. These units are custom-designed motor homes ranging in length from 32 to 39 feet and equipped with workspaces, satellite phones, computer jacks, data lines, fax machines and copiers. Our impacted customers can file claims, get answers to their claim questions and even receive immediate claim funds to help them with additional living expenses on covered losses during significantly damaging events.

Debit Card Claims Payments

We can provide our agency owners with debit cards they can give to customers for certain types of claims to help them get money as quickly as possible in a form they can easily access. These cards are particularly useful in the aftermath of a major catastrophe because they enable customers to buy food, clothing and other essential items.

Catastrophe Response Vehicles

In 2012, we began using smaller, more nimble vehicles that enable us to respond faster in the wake of a catastrophe by going into an impacted area as soon as we’re allowed to enter. These vehicles are equipped with the same technology as our Mobile Claim Centers, and make it possible for us to go directly to customers’ homes, often even before they’ve had a chance to report the claim. Allstate Claims personnel and agency owners can help ensure that the customers’ emergency needs are handled and that they begin the claim process quickly. If additional living expenses are appropriate, they can be addressed immediately. These vehicles, which are unique to Allstate, were used for the first time after Sandy in impacted areas along the East Coast.

Flexible Claims Capability

The NextGen technology we implemented in 2008 allows us to capitalize on the size and scale of our organization to support our customers more efficiently and effectively. For example, Allstate Claims employees in California can assist when a catastrophe hits the Northeast. This kind of load-balancing of claims across the country allows us to adapt our response to meet changing claims volumes.

Technology for Agency Owners

We support Allstate agency owners with electronic tools that help them connect with and take care of their customers how, when and where they choose. These tools allow agency owners to check the status of claims, communicate with the catastrophe team and even use online reporting technology to file claims on behalf of their customers.

Working to improve customer satisfaction

To provide customers with the products and services they need in the ways they want them, we listen and respond to their preferences and concerns at several points throughout our business interactions. The ways in which we solicit and manage customer feedback and relationships include:

  • Distributing a customer experience survey that allows us to receive direct feedback from customers and helps agency owners and the company take action to improve their experience.
  • Linking our customer complaint dashboard to our customer experience report, leveraging and connecting verbatim comments from customer surveys and customer complaints to identify and address improvement opportunities.
  • Offering the Claims Satisfaction Guarantee, an innovative breakthrough in personal auto protection. If eligible customers are not happy with how their paid Allstate car insurance claims go—for any reason—we will give them credit on their auto premium for up to six months. No other insurance company does that.
  • Providing additional e-business capabilities to give customers the services they want, how, when and where they choose. Customers can pay their bills, view policy information, initiate claims or find an agency online and from a mobile device using our Allstate Mobile application.
  • Encouraging every employee to connect with customers via a volunteer call program, “Thanks A Million,” through which employees can reach out directly to customers with a simple message of thanks, showing our appreciation for their business. In 2012, Allstate employees made 846,339 of these calls.
  • Collecting customer data at several points throughout the claims process in order to deliver a better and more consistent customer experience. This feedback positions us to respond more quickly to customer needs by refining processes and by delivering tools that allow us to establish an immediate and clear link between employee performance and the customer.

Responsible marketing communications

Insurance is about managing risk and building trust. We enter into every customer relationship with full disclosure and a clear intent to foster a long-term relationship. As a result, it is very important that our marketing materials and policies are clear and relevant, and are delivered in the method customers prefer. Our agencies help educate customers on how to select the products, coverage and services that are appropriate for their current and future needs.

Data privacy and protection.

Keeping personal information secure at all times is fundamental to remaining a trusted business and employer. Not only is this the right thing to do, it is also mandated by increasingly stringent privacy laws in the states and countries where we do business. Personal information must be protected from discovery by unauthorized parties. We respect and protect personal data by:

  • Complying with all applicable privacy laws and company policies on privacy and information technology usage
  • Requesting and retaining only the personal information that is needed
  • Communicating clearly how personal information is used, retained and disclosed
  • Respecting and protecting the privacy of every individual’s personal information
  • Embedding strong privacy-protection practices in all business processes and systems
  • Using a secure site when accessing personal information electronically
  • Never leaving personal information on or around workstations, and locking away any printed personal information
  • Immediately emailing Privacy Incident Management if we know or suspect that personal information has been disclosed inappropriately
  • Disclosing personal data or other confidential business information only to those who have a valid business need to know, or as required by law
  • Requiring suppliers or business partners to safeguard confidential consumer information and use it only to provide the requested services
  • Sharing consumer or employee information only as permitted by our Privacy Policy
  • Committing to an ongoing review of privacy policies and practices and their continuous improvement

Each quarter, we update our employees with information, training and resources to ensure that they understand our privacy policies. In addition, Data Privacy and Security courses are mandatory for all employees. We offer agency owners local workshops on privacy issues and provide current privacy information on our agency intranet. We also ensure that our customers are well-informed and educated on data practices by issuing a privacy statement at the point of contact and then annually.

What we collect

To provide our customers with the best pricing and plans for their unique situations, we need to collect information that may include their name, phone number, home and email addresses, driver’s license number, Social Security number, marital status, family member information and health care information. We also maintain records that include, but are not limited to, policy coverage, premiums and payment history. Finally, we collect information from outside sources that may include, but is not limited to, a customer’s driving record, claims history, medical information and credit information.

Reporting data privacy concerns

Questions about data privacy or suspected breaches of personal information can be directed to Allstate i-Report at 1-800-706-9855, a 24/7 toll-free number.

To learn more about how we use and share personal information and about our Internet and information security policies, read our complete Privacy Policy Statement.

ECC Monitor: OK