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Home Days in the Life

A Day in the Life: Office Manager, Insurance Agent’s Office for a Major Insurance Company

9:00 a.m.: Arrive at the office, log onto computer, and turn off the forwarding service on the phones. Launch e-mail. Go through my boss’ inbox as well as my own, weeding out junk mail and assigning messages to the appropriate staff for handling. If I’m unsure on who’s handling a certain client, I may have to research the client to see who has been working with them.

9:30 a.m.: Launch our “Beginning of Day” reports.  These reports hold a variety of information such as:

  1. Life policies that are in jeopardy of cancellation due to funding. I would assign these to our life specialist. They would call to inform them of the pending cancellation.
  2. Life policies that are up for a term renewal, thus increasing their premium. These would also be assigned to our life specialist for a phone call. They will call the insured to inform them of the upcoming rate increase and attempt to convert the policy to a whole life product.
  3. Policy changes that have been submitted to our company but have not been completed by our regional office. These require a follow up to see why they haven’t been completed.
  4. Policies in jeopardy of cancellation due to nonpayment. I print all “late” letters and mail them directly from our office.
  5. Antique/classic automobiles up for renewals. We are required to contact the insured to confirm they are still in agreement to the stated value of the vehicle. If not, they will be required to provide pictures of the vehicle accompanied with a new stated value.
  6. Policy changes submitted to our company that have been completed. I look up each policy change to confirm it has been completed and then delete it from our system.

10:30 a.m.: Revisit my e-mail inbox. The various items that need attention are listed below:

  1. Mortgage companies needing an updated declarations page due to a new home purchase or refinance.
  2. Contractors who need certificates of insurance sent to companies they are working for.
  3. Messages from our payment plan department needing further documentation to establish an automatic deduction from their checking account or credit card.
  4. Messages from our field management office regarding upcoming events, deadlines, and marketing incentives.
  5. Claim reports that have been filed after hours.

11:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m.: Lunch

12:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.: The afternoon is spent doing any or all of these duties.

Answering phones. Below are some examples of phone calls I take on a typical day.

  • New business quotes: We will ask the prospect numerous questions depending on the type of policy they want quoted. Complete the quote and call back with the premium.
  • An insured might call with a broken windshield or a crack that needs repair.  Go over their options for replacement or repair and their comprehensive deductible. Give them names of glass companies to contact for the work to be completed.
  • An insured called to review their condo policy since completing renovations.  We increased his building property and personal property to accommodate the upgrades to his home.
  • We received a call to send out our safe driver program for teens. We put a packet together with information regarding teen driving and mail it with the packet they are to complete for a discount.
  • A bank called to verify insurance on a homeowner's policy. They had received a cancellation notice and needed to confirm the insured had paid the bill. 
  • Our client called to report they were in an accident. Depending on whether they are at fault or not drives what information we give them as guidance to getting their car fixed. If they are not at fault, we describe the process in which they file a claim with the at-fault insurance company to have their vehicle fixed. This alleviates the insured from paying their collision deductible with us. If the insured is injured, we always recommend they file the claim with us. The at-fault carrier will not settle medical payments until the insured is finished with treatment and is willing to sign a waiver stating they are finished with medical treatment. If the accident is their fault, we take as much information as they have, which hopefully includes the other party. There are times they are still at the scene of the accident and need assistance getting their vehicle towed. We facilitate all of those elements as well, if requested.
  • An insured called with questions regarding the settlement of their homeowner's claim that involved hail. We called the claims adjuster on file to get the answers to the insured's question and return our insured’s phone call.
  • Our insured called to state they were recently married. Asked questions regarding the new spouse, any name/address change, and if we can quote the new spouse’s vehicle and/or homeowner's insurance.
  • Took a payment for a policy. We accept payments by MC/VISA or check by phone.
  • Received a call from a client that needs to insure their child’s instrument that is rented from school. Obtained the make, model, and replacement cost of the instrument and collected money to start the policy.
  • A death claim was reported by a spouse. We have to file a claim with our life department and wait for an e-mail that will contains the details of handling the claim.
  • Received a call to add a newly licensed driver.
  • An insured called to cancel an auto policy. They sold the vehicle. We then have to evaluate the drivers in the household and what they are driving now.

Other duties include:

  1. Ordering supplies.
  2. Collecting hours worked from two other employees, entering payroll.
  3. Doing a daily bank deposit and once a month, reconciling account.
  4. Reimbursing clients for claims incurred. We are limited to writing checks for emergency road service, vandalism claims, and single car collision claims.
  5. Recalculating homeowner's replacement cost based upon the insured’s request. To do this we gather information from the insured as well as from the county auditor Web site. We input this information to obtain a replacement cost for the home. Discuss our findings with the insured and make requested changes. 
  6. Marketing. We subscribe to various marketing campaigns through our company in which direct mail is utilized to our in-book clients as well as out-of-book prospects. 

I hope this gives you a brief snapshot of a “typical” workday. As you probably know, no day is ever the same and every day I learn something new. My passion to help people and my boss’ passion for excellent customer service drives our office to be one of those offices that makes people feel at ease anytime they call with questions.

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