Shift in operating model places customers at the heart of FSCS

In April, the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) brought its customer contact centre in-house. This marked a key milestone in the scheme’s transition towards a new hybrid operating model, which also saw FSCS announce earlier this month that PwC has been awarded the contract for its core claims service.

The move places customers at the heart of the scheme’s operations, with the new contact centre team responding to customer calls and webchats directly from FSCS’s existing office in London.

Bringing customer contact operations in-house adds value to FSCS’s claims service, with the small team of call handlers benefiting from shared learning opportunities and direct access to the wider expertise that exists across FSCS. The move also increases flexibility and efficiency when handling the increasingly complex and varied claims that FSCS receives.

Denise Farthing, Head of Operations at FSCS highlighted the importance of the change to the contact centre for customers:

“Each year we receive thousands of calls from people who have experienced potentially life-changing losses when their financial provider or adviser has gone out of business. We know how incredibly stressful it can be when you don’t know where to turn for help, that’s why our contact centre team are committed to supporting customers with any questions they may have about FSCS compensation and how to claim with us.

Improving customer experience is always top of the agenda for FSCS and bringing our contact centre in-house is a key part of this. Whilst our outsourced operations offered a great service, bringing this vital resource in-house will ensure FSCS continues to deliver the best outcomes for customers into the future. I’m pleased to share that we’re already seeing positive results from this development with more than 3500 calls and over 1600 webchats and email queries handled by the new contact centre team, and our customer satisfaction ratings at 90% in the first month of operation.”

Moving the customer contact centre in-house marks a key milestone in a wider programme of change that will see more of FSCS’s claims handled in-house, with a smaller proportion outsourced.

Over the years, FSCS has seen a rise in the volume of claims that often involve more complex, longer term products such as pensions or investments, where customers may not realise anything has gone wrong until long after financial advice was given or the product was taken out.

FSCS data shows that approximately 85% of claims are made five or more years after the original advice was given. This long timeline can present challenges when gathering the relevant data and evidence needed to process a claim. Increasing in-house capability and expertise in claims handling will ensure the best outcomes for customers.

Commenting on the wider changes to the claims handling service, Sarah Marin, Chief Customer Officer at FSCS said:

“Providing fair and timely outcomes for customers is a priority for FSCS and having the right mix of support to deliver this is important.

I’m delighted that the first big milestone in the transition to our new operating model has been successfully achieved and that our new in-house contact centre team is performing well. We’ll continue to update our customers and the industry as we progress through this strategically important transition.”

FSCS announced in June that PwC has been successful in its bid for FSCS’s core claims service contract following a competitive procurement process. Alongside its larger in-house team, working with PwC will ensure FSCS has the flexibility needed to handle the variety and volume of claims it receives. PwC is expected to begin handling FSCS claims this autumn as part of a phased transition plan.

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