Insurance Customer Service Representative

| January 4, 2013
Insurance is more than making a sale and binding coverage. Once a sale is confirmed, it becomes all about keeping the client happy. Unhappy clients don’t stick around. In today’s insurance climate when brokers and agents are working diligently to find new business, client retention is extremely important. The amount of time, effort and money spent on a new account far exceeds the cost of keeping an existing client happy. Successful insurance firms understand the importance of client service and hiring the right customer service representative for the job.

Important Role of an Insurance Customer Service Representative

In many cases, the customer service rep is on the front line when it comes to keeping existing clients happy. When an insured calls, he expects immediate, courteous service from a knowledgeable insurance representative. A poor experience can be the difference between retaining and losing an account.

Qualities of a Customer Service Representative

Licensing and Insurance Knowledge: Employers make licensing a requirement for hire as required by the state. A license, however, does not mean the CSR is knowledgeable. A combination of hands on experience and keeping abreast of the latest insurance developments are key to gaining knowledge.

Positive Attitude: An astute service rep understands that not all clients are calm and agreeable. Often times in the insurance industry, clients call at the last minute requesting documentation and/or confirmation of non-existing coverage. It is the CSR’s job to make sure that coverage is in effect prior to providing the necessary documentation. If the requested coverage is not a part of the existing policy, the customer service rep should obtain a price quote for the coverage and present it to the insured.

Quite often, time is of the essence and a calm positive and somewhat persuasive CSR has to encourage the insurance underwriter to quickly provide the required coverage at a reasonable price in order to satisfy the insured’s request. A calm positive attitude goes a long way in such situations.

Organized: Organization skills are important because service reps do not have linear jobs. Most customer service reps’s handle a book of business which means they must service several clients. Unfortunately, there are times when several clients require service at the same ti

Customer Service

me. Being able to multitask and prioritize is an important quality in being a successful customer service rep.

Communication Skills: The ability to clearly communicate is another important quality for a successful customer service rep. Simple things like returning phone calls, e-mails and responding to letters go a long way in the eyes of an insurance client. No matter how complicated or difficult a task may be, calling the insured and letting him know the status of the request may be all it takes to diffuse a potentially explosive situation.

Documentation Skills: The ability to properly document goes hand in hand with communication skills. While communication can be verbal or written, written documentation is tangible and hard to refute. There are times when a verbal agreement may not be enough and it’s up to the astute CSR to confirm the verbal agreement by sending a confirmation e-mail or letter reiterating the gist of a verbal conversation.

Job GrowthCareer Growth for Insurance Customer Service Reps

Qualified insurance customer service reps earn a respectable wage. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “in 2010, the hourly rate for entry level insurance agents/brokers is $22.48 per hour.

In addition to the financial rewards, another attractive aspect of being an insurance customer service rep is it provides a foundation for learning the insurance industry from the ground up. Because many customer service reps get involved in underwriting, marketing, pricing, the occasional claims and hand holding aspect of insurance, they get a chance to decide if they want to use their experience as a spring board for transitioning into one of the many more specialized fields of insurance.

Additional Reading

How to Become an Insurance Broker in the United States

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Category: Insurance

About the Author ()

Felicia A. Williams is a wife, mother, freelance writer and owner of Tidbits About Money.

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