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Construct Services repairs buildings and helps reset lives after loss

Created to serve Australia’s property insurance industry, Construct Services is attuned to the professional and personal implications of loss. Striking the ideal balance between meeting insurers’ business objectives and the needs and concerns of their claimants requires exceptional responsiveness, flexibility, and expertise, which the Wangara-based builder delivers on all counts.

Founded in 1989, Construct Services is the only national builder exclusively dedicated to insurers. Working with insurance companies, loss adjusters, and brokers, Construct Services delivers high quality repair and reconstruction work to make both insured customers and insurers whole after a loss. Whether dealing with private homes, commercial buildings, or public facilities, the company’s experts bring more than 30 years of trade craft and industry knowledge to every problem they’re called to solve.

The company specializes in all aspects of building, including repairing the damage caused by storms, floods, fires, earthquakes, as well as the aftermath of burglaries, impact damage, and even water and gas pipe leaks. In every circumstance, time is of the essence; within 60 minutes of being alerted to a claim, Construct reaches out to policyholders. Because damage never takes a holiday, staff is at the ready any time of the day or night, 365 days a year to perform emergency and “make safe” repairs. Inquiries are never handled offshore -- the company’s call center network is 100% Australian.

“Because we are only focused on the insurance industry, we have a deeper understanding of what each client may need,” Aeron Rowe, Construct Services’ National Operations Manager told VENTURE. “We can tailor our service offering to suit both the insurer who requires volume and coverage, and also to the boutique market which has different needs.”

Excelling across such a broad scope requires the mastery of a very basic but critical skill that companies often neglect in their quest for market share, and that’s the ability to listen. When it comes to claims, Rowe revealed, “I often hear of the process getting in the way of the outcome. Our point of difference is to look after people -- not just claims.” To date, Construct has repaired over 360,000 homes and businesses across the continent.

From repairing relatively minor structural damage to undertaking extensive rebuilds after a catastrophe, the company’s scale enables them to place teams where and when they are needed. Their national resourcing model approach divides claims into manageable portions, which is often a necessity after mass weather damages or disruptions such as wildfires.

“At the click of a button, we can dedicate all staff to focus on an area of demand, such as the first contact through our allocation software to ramp up in areas of priority,” Rowe explained. “We also have dedicated teams whose primary focus is on complex major losses who look after the larger claims, leaving a separate team to focus on the short tail claims such as burglary and storm water entry.”

When torrential hailstorms wreaked havoc recently, Construct developed a dedicated solution with exclusive trades and supervisors focusing on specific claims to deliver repair results in record time.

“We completed over 550 re-roofs in under 12 months by importing large teams of trades to get through the workload and used “fly in, fly out” arrangements to engage our building supervisors to ensure it all went well,” Rowe said.

Future Focused with a decidedly human touch

The company’s embrace of technology is another significant differentiator from others in the space. Their pioneering efforts to stay on the forward edge came in quite handy when the pandemic struck.  Construct had been performing virtual inspections prior to the arrival of the virus and was using a full cloud-based software platform developed in partnership with claims fulfillment and workflow technology developer Ensureflow.

“It was relatively easy for us to move to remote workplaces and home offices and continue to operate at capacity,” Rowe said.

During lockdown, Construct handled six catastrophic events and continued to grow. Although burglaries and maintenance-related issues declined, special attention was focused on claimants whose circumstances put them at risk for harm.

“We had all of our staff trained to identify vulnerable customers and work with the insurer to help them along through the claims,” Rowe said.

The Ensureflow collaboration is part of the company’s future focus and customer-centricity.

“We are heavily involved with them and often engage them to develop solutions to problems we face to streamline the process,” Rowe said.

This includes a policyholder app that will enable claimants to see their file and all of the actions that Construct will take on their specific claim. Users may add photographs or request a supervisor to examine work, and track trade scheduling and attendance. The app will also collect performance feedback in real-time.

A work distribution model assigns projects based on location, skill and availability.

“We also have developed software to aid the onboarding and compliance requirements of our trades,” Rowe said. “Tradie Locker will bring the trades in through a compliance onboarding journey, and make sure we have the right people who are licensed and insured in their fields of expertise.”

Construct’s hands-on efforts are supported by a corporate culture centered on delivering the best possible claims management and building expertise to clients and claimants while standing tall as an employer of choice. In addition to recruiting and retaining the building industry’s very best people, the company has pledged to create growth opportunities through staff development. Another three key components of their strategic plan include continued operational excellence that results in delivering the best product in the market, putting clients on the forefront of everything they do, and the aforementioned future focus and commitment to using technology to improve claimants’ lives and their clients’ business results.

Given the company’s commitment to success, it should come as no surprise that they’re plowing ahead with an aggressive plan to double in size over the next three years. Rowe expects growth to come in the complex and major loss space, noting that they are already significantly ahead of their plan for those sectors.

“We are also working with more and more brokers and underwriters along with direct insurers to expand our footprint,” he said. “That’s very good news for our insurance industry, and for our people.”