POWER BROKER: WORKERS’ COMPENSATION
Worldwide Risk Management, Portland, Maine
Embracing Unique Solutions
AMK9, a global security firm operating in volatile regions such as
Afghanistan and Iran, faced significant challenges with injuries.
The firm had a broker at the time but felt that broker wasn’t
delivering the value the company expected. It cast its net and
found Worldwide Risk Management’s Jason Allen.
“He used his resources to dramatically improve our loss
history,” said risk manager Ralph Mylie. “I would say that he’s saved us millions of dollars.”
Part of that effort included working with the insurance carrier to connect the client with
vendors with the right expertise.
One of the vendors Allen sourced uses sophisticated baseline imaging that can be
compared against post-injury imaging to more accurately identify work causation. This
was key, said Mylie, because a good chunk of the company’s losses had been coming from
people that were probably not screened properly to begin with.
Partnering with that vendor, AMK9 gained a high level of confidence it was paying for
legitimate claims, and costs began dropping rapidly.
“He goes 120 percent for his clients,” said the founder and chief scientific officer for the
vendor. She said she has worked with several of Allen’s clients with similar issues managing
soft tissue injuries.
Added another client with personnel deployed across the globe, “Jason absolutely
understands what our company’s true needs are.”
Travis Biggert, CIC, CRM
Chief Sales Officer
HUB International, Tulsa, Okla.
Building Dream Teams
Travis Biggert’s approach to client service is a little bit like solving
puzzles: carefully select each piece until the whole program fits.
Biggert and his HUB team spent years interviewing and vetting
occupational medicine physicians, attorneys, neurosurgery groups
and orthopedic groups to build teams that best serve their clients.
“Our premium had almost doubled in a year,” said one client, a
large retailer. “We had some claims that were dragging out.” Travis and his team “helped us
refine our process,” he said. “Our premiums would have been half a million, but now they’re
under $200,000. He’s really been a game changer for us.”
Mercy Regional EMS. owner and CEO Duke Dixon said Biggert came in and redesigned the
company’s program from top to bottom. “At that point I was willing to try anything.
“Travis brought in some programs that restructured the way we do workers’
comp,” including pre-employment testing and a specialized musculoskeletal tool called
Electrodiagnostic Functional Assessment.
“Our number of claims dropped practically overnight,” said Dixon. “And the claims we
Matt Edelheit, ARM
have now we know are legit.”
Biggert works exceptionally hard “to help insureds understand their loss patterns and
develop strategies to reduce those losses,” said Mark Gruber, chief operating officer of
“Travis is probably the most proactive individual I’ve ever had the pleasure to work with.”
Senior Vice President
Bespoke Solutions for Every Challenge
Matt Edelheit thrives on problems that require complex solutions.
Recently, Edelheit’s client, Valvoline Inc., spun off from its parent
company, and separated legacy liabilities that were assigned to both
companies. The vast majority of these claims were workers’ comp,
some dating back to the early ’70s.
“I was hired to come in and do ERM,” said Mark Bures,
Valvoline’s manager of enterprise risk management and insurance. “I had 15 years’
experience in ERM and zero in insurance.”
“Matt was an unbelievable resource in helping me understand it all,” Bures said. “I call
him for everything, and he always takes the call.”
Working closely with all stakeholders, Edelheit’s team created a customized insurance
program that reduced the client’s retentions, reduced their total cost of risk and removed
more than $1.8M of historical losses that would have otherwise been collateralized.
For another client, a nationwide self-storage company that owns some of its facilities
and manages others, Edelheit developed a unique program structure that allows smaller
owners to take advantage of the company’s buying power to get better rates.
“I’m not aware of anyone doing what we did,” said the company’s risk management
director. Edelheit recommended a safety shoe program for employees and reduced
bending-related injuries by instituting a walk-to-open procedure for unit doors.
“We’ve dropped probably between 35 and 40 percent in claims costs and premiums.”
Chad Hoxie, CPCU, ARM, ARM-P, AU, AINS, AIS
Assistant Vice President
Alliant, San Diego
The Man with the Answers
The CEO at San Diego-based PMS Janitorial was comfortable with
her incumbent provider. But her son Phil Senescall, the company’s
sales director, convinced her to take a meeting with his longtime
friend, Chad Hoxie. She was powerfully impressed, said Senescall,
and Hoxie has been a game-changer for the company ever since.
“He’s great with giving us out-of-the-box ideas,” said Maria Butler,
the company’s HR director. Hoxie’s current work-in-progress is trying to expand the company’s
medical provider network to include a cross-border health care group specializing in serving
U.S. workers who would rather receive treatment in Mexico. If he succeeds, it will build a
higher level of trust with Hispanic employees who are injured on the job,” said Butler.
She adds that Hoxie’s customer service is off the charts. Perfect example: Late
afternoon on the Friday before Christmas, an urgent question cropped up.
“I knew a lot of people were headed out early, but I was desperately trying to get an
answer for my employee,” she said. “I had exhausted all my resources as far as calling my
adjuster and my entire line of contacts.”
But she called Hoxie, and he called her right back and promised to find the answer
she needed. Not only did he get the answer promptly, “but then offered to get me more
information,” she said.
“Here I thought I was going to have to wait until the following week. I don’t know who he
called, but he was able to get me an answer.”
Tim Keip, ARM
Senior Vice President
A Steadying Presence
Any broker can do a good job when a client’s sailing in calm
waters. But it takes a Power Broker® like Marsh’s Tim Keip to help
steady the ship during storms.
Keip’s mettle was tested during a tricky renewal for a
manufacturing client that had been acquired by a larger company
and was merging risk management and insurance departments.
The client enlisted Keip’s help in steering the parent company to its carrier and
developing a new program that played to both company’s strengths.
“It took tons of work” and some serious creativity, said the client, including carving out
certain pieces of the program and applying different deductibles.
Another client was in the middle of a significant marketing effort when tragedy struck,
and the company was faced with a catastrophic claim. Half of the potential carriers
dropped the company like a hot potato. But Keip kicked into overdrive to keep the claim
from derailing the renewal, organizing on-site inspections and safety presentations,
making a case for carriers that necessary steps had been taken to minimize the risk of
a repeat catastrophe. He made a convincing case that while bad things do happen, the
company had taken responsible measures to improve safety results, the client said.
When all was said and done, the program benefited from significant improvements,
including a unique feature that allowed the client to apply appropriate retentions to
different aspects of its operations.
Marsh, New York
Guiding Clients Toward Best in Class
Marsh’s Dennis Tierney is the one you call when you need
someone to take the 30,000-foot view and find ways to turn a good
program into one that is truly best in class.
“Dennis came onto our account, and it was a breath of fresh
air,” said Phil Scarano, director of risk finance management,
Scarano said Tierney has a gift for “making sure the best people and the best talent are
touching your files.”
During an aggressive claims review, Tierney revamped the way the company accesses
legal services, ensuring that a wider breadth of defense firms is considered. He also made
the shift from in-house counsel to a panel of counselors.
Tierney, as National Director of Workers’ Comp Claims, is exceptional at helping clients
understand how claims in one part of the country may be looked at differently than in other
regions or jurisdictions. That’s why for a distributor client, Tierney took the time to handpick the company’s team of resources, including attorneys in each jurisdiction.
“He was part of the interview process,” said the company’s risk and insurance manager.
“He was instrumental in helping us find the right fit, and helping us understand the
“His leadership mantra is ‘you should always be measured by how you make the people
around you better.’ It’s one of his strengths,” said Scarano.