Progressive Insurance

Topics: Insurance, Allstate, State Farm Insurance Pages: 31 (9370 words) Published: February 20, 2011
Chapter 6 Progressive delivers the unexpected – Progressive Insurance

Case description

It’s a steamy Saturday in Houston, a day so piping hot that one would gladly consider diving into a vat of Texas chili for relief. But chili is a messy business, so instead, half the population seems to have taken refuge in their air-conditioned cars, choking Houston’s freeways as a result. For Kristen Botello, all those cars mean just one thing: lots of accidents. She’s not rooting for wrecks. But she knows from experience that accidents happen. And when they do, she wants to be on the scene immediately – before the police arrive, before a wrecker tows away the cars. Why all the urgency? Because Botello, 28, settles claims for Progressive Corporation, an auto-insurance maverick that has built a prosperous, fast-growing company around speed, service, and software. Around lunchtime, Botello’s two-way radio crackles with a message. “Kristen, we’ve got a scene,” says the dispatcher. She heads for the freeway in a Ford Explorer with the label “Progressive” emblazoned on both sides. Accidents are like mysteries, she says. And like any good detective, Botello doesn’t want the scene disturbed. Sometimes she shows up so quickly that all the clues are still in place: skid marks, witnesses, cars resting in post-collision chaos. Botello inspects the vehicles, assesses the damage, does her analysis, whips out her laptop, downloads a claim file, and cuts a check on the spot. Case closed.1

A support to business strategy
Progressive Insurance Inc. figures among the top four autoinsurance companies in the U.S. and represents the nation’s


Putting the puzzle together

Part III

largest writer of private passenger auto insurance through independent agents. Progressive is also the number one writer of motorcycle insurance in the U.S. In business since 1937, the company provides all drivers with competitive rates and 24 h, in-person, and online services. The company sells its products (automobile, motorcycle, recreation vehicle, commercial vehicle, personal watercraft, boat, and all-terrain vehicle) over the phone, online, and through more than 30,000 independent agents2 nationwide. Today, the company has nearly 19,490 employees in over 350 offices serving about 8 million customers. Progressive’s culture is one of high energy, continuous innovation, and dynamic growth. The corporate web site ( com) presents some of the elements that make Progressive a unique place to work: ■

Business casual dress: Progressive’s philosophy is to allow people to dress in a style consistent with their personal tastes, but which also presents a neat appearance to customers and other contacts; ■ Art collection: To foster creative thinking, all large Progressive offices feature works from Progressive’s contemporary art collection, regarded as one of the best in the country; ■ Safety and wellness: Most major Progressive locations feature a collegial campus setting and atmosphere, including cafeterias, Progressive-operated fitness centers and primary care facilities; ■ Innovation: Progressive prides itself on being the technological leader in the auto-insurance industry. The company has implemented a wide variety of technologies and has received a great deal of recognition surrounding its efforts. From its beginnings in 1937, Progressive valued innovation. It introduced the industry’s first drive-in claims office. In 1956, Progressive’s Safe Driver Plan lowered rates for low-risk drivers, setting an industry policy standard. More recently, the Immediate Response claims service was introduced and became the first and only 24 h, in-person claims service that serves customers when and where they need it most – at the accident scene. To complement the Immediate Response program, the Immediate Response Vehicle (IRV) was then introduced. The IRV is a

Chapter 6

Progressive delivers the unexpected – Progressive Insurance

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