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AXA Partners is an expert in crisis management
We are a passionate, customer focussed business, with customers' needs at the forefront of our thinking. We are proud of the amount of time and effort put in by our employees from across the business – our people really do care.
Responding to customers at their time of need is what we do. We took our learnings from previous local and international crises, and used these to deliver our response across all of our product lines – delivering front line services for our customers at their time of need.
We started from a position of strength using our digital capability, including a new network portal and online claims management journey for customers.
As a business, our employees have a ‘can do’ attitude and it is with thanks to them that we were able to move our business to home working in a matter of days, without undue impact to our partners and their customers. All customer KPIs were unaffected, ensuring business continuity.
"We ensured business continuity & service for customers throughout"
How did we do this?
Over the first month of the pandemic, we took many steps to respond to the challenges presented by Covid-19. As an emergency assistance provider, we pride ourselves on our ability to respond to adverse conditions and to ensure a smooth continuation of service for our partners and customers. We tooks the following key steps:
- Held daily crisis team meetings to discuss priorities and next steps, to ensure continuation of service for partners and customers
- Enabled 99% of employees to be working from home within 2 weeks
- Upgraded internet bandwidth to support increased demand
- Maintained telephony service resilience, with customers receiving normal service levels
- Maintained telephony capability – such as our ability to record calls, and provide "live" team manager call listening even whilst home working. We provided excellent kit to our agents for superior level security with all the hardware operating through our firewalls
- Postponed all non-essential work to focus on safeguarding the business and our ability to provide assistance to customers
- Maintained open communication with our network and partners
- Engaged with 3 major parts suppliers, who have implemented new measures to enable them to continue trading effectively & provide a sustainable service
- Issued continuous support and guidance to our employees
"Our robust response & business continuity proved to our partners that they are with the right one"
Customers are our priority
As an emergency assistance business, we are specialists in reacting to a crisis; protecting our people, caring about our customers and partners and ensuring full continuity of our operations, in a safe way.
- Extensive experience in managing crises
- A flat structure enabling quick & efficient decision making
- Strong governance ensuring full continuity of our operations in a safe way
- Speed & agility to move our resources & business operations to maintain service
- Ability to offer additional services to support partners during unprecedented periods
- Strong & resilient financial strength: Standard & Poor’s AA; Moody’s Aa3; Fitch Ratings AA
- ‘ONE AXA’ ethos enabling collaboration with other countries within the AXA Partners Group to scenario-plan future actions
- Ensured product value with customers continuing to have access to services that have helped during emergency situations. As always we follow all FCA guidelines and recommendations
"We care for our partners & their customers"
Delivering customer satisfaction
During this crisis our customers felt like they were well supported and we received excellent feedback.
We are incredibly proud that we continued to meet all of our Service Level Agreements throughout the pandemic. Indeed, in some cases we actually supported overflow calls for some of our partners. Feedback was circulated internally wthin the business, so that our agents could see the impact they were having.
"Extremely fast and efficient service in these difficult times. Call answered quickly, plumber here within 2 hours and job satisfactory and professional. It was a stressful time made easier by this seamless process. Thank you all!!"
Supporting our 'front line' network
The wellbeing and resilience of our network was also important; it is they who assist customers during an emergency. You could call them the 'front line' of our business.
They continued to get hold of spare parts during the crisis as key merchants and suppliers remained open – ensuring that they could carry out essential work for our customers. We are lucky to have a strong, resilient, quality network and they continued to help customers during this time. We worked closely with them to ensure their safety as well as that of our customers and to also ensure resilience.
What did we do to ensure our network was resilient?
- Throughout the pandemic we closely monitored network performance levels, to ensure network resilience. We were delighted to not see any undue impact to service and parts availability, even at the beginning of the lockdown
- Our contractors followed the Public Health England guidelines on customer engagement, ensuring the safety of workers and customers. We confirmed their “Essential” status, to maintain the provision of service for our partners and customers
- For parts logistics, we engaged with three major suppliers for our business. These providers put in new measures so that they could trade effectively and provide a sustainable service for customers. We focused on them because a number of the smaller merchants had to initially close. Our main focus at first was on heating and plumbing supplies due to the time of year when the lockdown occurred
- We continually updated all our partners through regular communication on the steps we were taking with our network, as well as how the network was performing
Protecting the wellbeing of our employees
Our employees were paramount in this crisis and we have been so impressed with how they have adapted to a new way of working. IT worked tirelessly to get laptops and other equipment to staff who don’t ordinarily work from home.
As a responsible employer our employees’ welfare was our number 1 priority, and as such we:
- Carried out regular surveys with anonymised results to enable a true picture of how our employees were feeling and coping
- Provided regular communications such as videos from senior AXA Partner Directors so that employees still felt engaged, even when working remotely
- Provided home working and health and wellbeing guidance for employees
- Provided robust IT support for home working
- Provided a free employee counselling service
- Remotely inducted new starters – we even managed to get a new starter set up who was stranded in Poland!
- Encouraged ‘keeping in touch’ initiatives – such as remote quizzes!
Helping our local community
Like any responsible organisation, Corporate Responsibility (CR) has always been of the utmost importance to AXA Partners. In the current climate it is more important than ever. Therefore, we contacted all of the charities we’ve supported over the years to understand their individual circumstances and challenges, to determine who needed our help.
A robust response
We have worked tirelessly to respond to this global crisis, using our scale, strength, and many years’ experience as an emergency assistance provider. We have:
- Protected our partners
- Looked after our customers
- Cared for our people
- Helped our local & global community
- Accelerated our digital capabilities
The Covid-19 pandemic has taught us that we can continue to provide robust support for our partners and end customers, while at the same time looking after the wellbeing of our employees and stakeholders.
"We have an adaptable, resilient and scalable business that has ensured business continuity for our partners and their customers"