November 2, 2017 by Staff
The government of British Columbia has hired PwC Canada to undertake an operational review of the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) in an effort to identify wasteful spending and areas that need reforming. The audit is also meant to find ways to prevent fraud and overbilling.
The process includes selecting 100 random files for a comprehensive review, similar to a financial audit, but directed at business practices and aimed at cutting waste, overbilling and poor cost controls, notes the government’s announcement on Wednesday.
“This is one of the many actions we are taking so that the people of B.C. can have confidence in and continue to benefit from ICBC, one of our most important public assets,” said Attorney General David Eby in a statement. “Surprisingly, this is the first review of ICBC we’re aware of that directs the reviewers to talk to front-line employees about where they see waste, fraud, overbilling or other opportunities for reform.”
PwC has been tasked with identifying opportunities to reduce costs at the insurer, which lost almost half a billion dollars last year, and finding ways to maintain or improve the quality of service levels for customers.
The accounting firm will look at all previous reports and recommendations related to ICBC’s operations over the last five years, and will review approaches in other jurisdictions and segments within the insurance industry related to ICBC’s various business lines. PwC Canada will conduct interviews with current unionized and management staff from ICBC, the announcement states.
“ICBC will not be back on the road to financial sustainability or in a position to provide affordable rates to British Columbians without major changes at every level,” said Eby.
A final report will be submitted to government in early 2018, which is when the report will be made public.
“The ICBC board and all senior management are committed to working alongside government to make sure action is taken as quickly as possible to bring about long-term, sustainable improvements at ICBC,” said Joy MacPhail, board chair at ICBC, in a statement. “The resulting solutions we want to see must be focused on striking the balance between relieving the cost pressures on ICBC while ensuring improved services and affordable rates for all British Columbians.”
This story was originally published by Canadian Insurance Top Broker.