US Insurance Awards - Helmsman
OneVoice: Encouraging a recovery partnership through inclusive language
Our commitment to excellence shines through.
Ensuring that injured worker advocacy is a critical component of workers compensation claims management continues to be the cornerstone of our philosophy here at Helmsman. In managing more than 300,000 workers compensation claims per year, our team saw a great opportunity to improve and clarify the claims experience for injured workers and their employers through our new initiative, OneVoice.
With OneVoice, we’ve identified insurance jargon that might seem confusing or combative to an injured worker – language that could ultimately contribute to higher litigation rates, delayed returns to work, or prolonged treatments.
OneVoice aims to support injured workers by replacing jargon or complex language with inclusive, empathetic, and easy-to-understand terms that encourage a recovery partnership.
Bringing OneVoice to life for our claims professionals
But how do you bring an idea like this to life for 2,000 claims professionals? Through an all-hands-on-deck effort that included:
- A 16-week phased rollout
- An e-learning series of six videos, illustrating “what good looks like” for claims professionals
- Steady communication from all levels of leadership, reinforcing OneVoice language and its benefits to injured workers and their employers
- 2,400 brief stand-up meetings that gave our teams the opportunity to share and practice key words and phrases
- A 70-phrase online resource of the most frequently used phrases that could alienate an injured worker.
Through this program of e-learning, team discussions, and online resources, our claims professionals have enthusiastically embraced OneVoice, knowing they now have another valuable skill to help them connect and communicate with injured workers.
“Small changes in language resulted in big mindset changes, which improved recovery and return to work by more fully engaging injured workers,” notes Wesley Hyatt, Senior Vice President, Workers Compensation Claims, Helmsman Management Services LLC. “The way you treat an injured worker — including the words and phrases you say — can have a material impact on the life of the claim. Plus, the workers compensation process can be scary and confusing for injured workers, who are naturally concerned about their health, recovery, and career.”
These sentiments were echoed by many injured workers who remarked that the new communication style was reassuring and empathetic during a vulnerable time in their lives.