Summer forecast: A peak season with challenges
SOS International expects a summer peak season in Travelcare to be the busiest since 2019.
New staff, adjustments in the operational set-up and the possibility to report cases online. SOS International has put several tools in place to respond to a challenging peak season, with activity levels expected to reach 70-80% compared to summer 2019 (the last summer before Covid).
“We are facing a busy summer, and we have prepared ourselves as best we can for the challenges we face,” says Karin Tranberg, EVP, Travelcare, SOS International.
Like other companies and players in the travel and insurance industry, SOS International has experienced challenges recruiting sufficient staff with relevant skills. Since autumn 2021, 110 new employees have been recruited.
Due to the complexity of Travelcare’s case processing, thorough internal training of new staff is necessary - followed by buddy programmes where new and experienced staff work closely together.
“We are looking forward to what looks like a normal summer, as we remember them before Covid. We are aware that it will be challenging, but we believe we have organised ourselves in the best possible way to cope with a busy peak season,” says Karin Tranberg.
This is how SOS International responds to a busy peak season at Travelcare:
- Since autumn 2021, 110 new employees have been recruited, and in parallel, a new case management system has been put into operation.
- Operational set-up: We are organising ourselves to make even better use of our resources across the emergency centre. We are establishing a cross-disciplinary back office to support the entire alarm centre and allow our most experienced staff to focus on the heavier cases while new recruits work primarily on less complex cases.
- We have launched a digital solution where travellers can report a claim online, and we expect this to lead to a smooth process and positively impact phone waiting times.
- The alarm centre “borrows” staff from other departments at SOS International.
In addition to the recruitment challenges mentioned above, the pandemic still affects case processing. Fewer flights and infrastructure problems at airports make case processing less flexible and more time-consuming for SOS International.