Investigative Firm Uses Google Maps Platform for Competitive Advantage and Efficiency

Posted by

“Everything was extremely easy to set up. We have the standard company setup for Google Maps Platform, and once we had the API keys, we were off to the races.”

CoventBridge Group is the largest worldwide investigation company, providing surveillance, claims investigation, counter-fraud programs, desktop investigations, record retrieval, canvasses and more. With offices in the United Kingdom, the United States and Ireland, the company provides top-tier data privacy and security services, deploys robust case management technology customized for clients’ needs — and delivers worldwide coverage through its 1,000 employees and affiliates worldwide.

A Need to Prioritize and Manage Thousands of Open Cases

A significant portion of business for CoventBridge Group is field investigations. As one example, CoventBridge might be retained by an insurance company to verify that its claimant continues to have the injury he reported and is indeed unable to return to work. CoventBridge then sends an investigator to the claimant’s home or other location to observe the person and confirm the injury and inability to work. Typical turnaround time for a surveillance case is two weeks, but occasionally the requested turnaround time for a project such as this can be just two hours. Case managers and field investigators must perform their jobs quickly and thoroughly; there is no time to waste.

To manage their 5,000 open cases at any given time, CoventBridge uses SmartPartner, its proprietary claims software platform that incorporates Google Maps Platform. Prior to 1998, when SmartPartner was first incorporated, all work in the investigative industry was performed manually. CoventBridge Group is the first investigative firm to implement this top-of-the-line automation technology, which has propelled its growth into the largest worldwide investigative solutions company today.

Incorporating Maps into Claims Software Saves Time and Resources

CoventBridge and its predecessor company had been using SmartPartner for more than 20 years. According to Jason Zurn, CoventBridge Group’s CIO, the company incorporated Google Maps Platform into its claims solution in around 2011. Today, SmartPartner is used for “everything”; all case management, claims management, payroll and more. There is also a client-facing aspect to SmartPartner; customers enter a case number to view current and past referral details, claims data and case attachments, or submit a request for a new investigation.

Incorporating Google Maps Platform into SmartPartner has been a huge benefit for the scheduling process. Case managers use Google Maps Platform to schedule field investigator activities. They can see where the investigators are — and can assign hundreds of cases at once, enabling investigators to travel across claim sites in the most efficient manner possible. Driving directions and real-time traffic are incorporated into the platform, so investigators don’t have to exit SmartPartner to plan their routes. Using the Google Maps APIs to integrate Maps directly into the software has truly streamlined the entire scheduling process.


A screenshot of SmartPartner shows all the information that the case managers and field investigators need to manage field assignments. Case managers assign cases to the nearest investigator; field investigators can then plan their days to make the most efficient use of their time using built-in driving directions and maps.

Fine-tuning SmartPartner into exactly what CoventBridge wants and needs has involved “a lot of tweaking over the years, but we never considered using anything other than Google Maps Platform,” Zurn said.

“Nothing is as accurate and up-to-date as Google Maps,” added Bradley Plank, Director of Application Development at CoventBridge.

Technology Brings Competitive Advantage

When Mr. Plank initially contacted Google to discuss Maps, a CoventBridge colleague recommended that he consider Onix as the partner to get the process going. “Everything was extremely easy to set up. We have the standard company setup for Google Maps Platform, and once we had the API keys we were off to the races,” he recalled. “The documentation that came from Google was really good, and Google and Onix are great about informing us of new APIs coming out.”

He continued, “We have a team of developers and have recently turned on real-time traffic, which gives extreme ease of use when scheduling. We’ve seen a big efficiency gain since that implementation.” CoventBridge uses several Google Maps APIs; JavaScript, Street View Image, Directions and Predictive Time Travel, which is a combination of the Directions and the Distance Matrix APIs.

Since streamlining their case assignments process,CoventBridge can take on an infinite number of investigations.. This has allowed the firm to continue to scale and grow its business.

“Even though SmartPartner is largely an internal tool, we do demo it to prospects”, Zurn said. “We invest in technology and are proud to show current and potential customers that our technology is better than that of our competitors.”

Related customer stories

Subscribe to to stay in the know

Your trusted guide to everything cloud

No matter where you are on your journey, trusted Onix expert scan support you every step of the way.