Efficient management of disability claim files that lead to fair, just outcomes for all parties is a key responsibility of every claims assessor. Before making decisions, whether on disability income or total permanent disability claims, prudent claims assessors must evaluate each claim’s information fully and correctly. It can be all too easy to fall into well-worn patterns of investigation and analysis that have been successful in the past.
In this Briefing Note, we look at the many traps that can adversely affect a disability claims assessor’s decision-making process, and how they can be identified, recognised and ultimately avoided. Familiar and oft-used patterns, no matter how effective, might not always be the best approach. Problems can occur at any time during the processing of a disability claim that can make the claim difficult to manage and delay the final decision. When a claims assessor’s personal beliefs and assumptions, and the influence they can have on the assessor’s claimant communications and interactions, are factored in, it is easy to see how decision-making traps can trip even the most conscientious assessor.
The 1998 Harvard Business Review article ’The Hidden Traps in Decision Making,’ by John S. Hammond, Ralph L. Keeney and Howard Raiffa, states:
- We have a tendency to stick with the status quo
- We tend to only look for evidence that confirms our preferences
- We are likely to throw good money after bad to defend our position and avoid admitting a mistake
The article further suggests it is the `invisibility’ of these traps that makes them dangerous … and because they are hardwired into our thinking process, we fail to recognise them – even as we fall right into them.Read More +