The Challenges of Insurance Policy Service

Raymond Bell |

Calling an insurance company for policy service as a customer or an agent has become very challenging in the past few years. You are initially greeted by a confusing menu and lengthy messages. Then you are forced to interact with an AI bot. This is all roadblocks to make it difficult to speak an actual person. Once you get passed that you then must enter your policy number last four of your social security or agent code. Then you have a 15 minute to 30-minute wait to speak to someone. Once you have a customer service representative live you must give all your information again and additional information. Some carriers are using information in consumer reports and will ask you past addresses and old credit accounts that you had many years ago. Finally, you get to ask your question or make your request only to be placed on hold. Then you are told your request will take 5 to 7 business days to complete.

Why is this happening? Insurance customer service positions have a high turnover rate and insurance companies have had a difficult time filling those positions post covid. Insurance companies are not investing in training new customer service reps and are placing bodies to answer calls. I can remember when insurance companies would put their newly hired customer service representative through an 8-to-12-week training course before being on the phone. Those days are long gone.

Insurance companies are utilizing technology to replace human capital. Client and agent online portals can provide policy information and have policy service functions. AI chat bots and phone menus provide policy information and some policy service functionality. Insurance companies are investing in this and not people.

The last 20 years there has been a major focus on privacy and protecting PI. This is important, but there needs to be better training of customer service representatives. The carriers that have instituted the more draconian verification methods need to use more common sense and balance.

Here are some tips if you have to call into an insurance company:

  1. Alot yourself 45 minutes of time.
  2. Make sure you have your policy number and information ready.
  3. If you are an agent, make sure you have your agent code handy.
  4. Listen carefully to the menu.
  5. Take a deep breath and be patient.
  6. Ask for a supervisor if you are not getting what you need.

The changing world of customer service requires us to adapt and change. Be patient and try to embrace technology and you should be able to navigate your pursuit of policy service more effectively.

Securities offered through LPL Financial, Member FINRA/SIPC. Investment Advice offered through WCG Wealth Advisors, LLC, a Registered Investment Advisor. WCG Wealth Advisors, LLC and The Wealth Consulting Group are separate entities from LPL Financial.