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Flashcards in Chapter 14 Deck (75):

define customer service

consists of a broad range of activities that an insurer and its employees perform to keep customers satisfied so that they continue doing business with the company and seek positively about it to other potential customers.


Give 6 benefits to having exceptional customer service (CS)

1. enhance a companys image
2. attracts new customers
3. helps companies retain existing customers
4. makes it easier to recruit new employees and producers
5. reduces time spent on corrections
6. potentially increases a company's profitabiity


what do you call the CS department for group insurance products?

member services


Some insurers assign customer service employees to separate work teams, what is work teams?

where two or more people work together on a regular basis to coordiante their activities to accomplish common goals.


most insurance companies have specialized customer service units that serve as customer's first contact with the insured. what is this unit typically?

A customer contact center. - provides customers with a variety of channels, such as telephones, fax, emails, internet chat, and traditional mail, for communicating with a company.


What is a customer service representative (CSR)?

any employee who's primary job responsibility is to support external customers by conducting two basic types of activities.
1. interacting with customers face to face communications or through communications media
2. processing transactions for customers


How can a customer service associate (newbie) be promoted to CSR>

demonstrate a variety of skills including accuracy in processing transactions, verbal and written communication, productivity, completion of continuing insurance education requirements, and proficiency in the company's operations and products.


what is the primary goal of a customer service department?

to provide effective and cost-efficient customer service that build customer loyalty.


what is customer loyalty?

a customer's feeling of attachment to or preference for a company's people, products or services.


What 6 qualities makes customer service effective?

1. prompt
2. complete
3. accurate
4. courteous
5. confidential


What 3 areas of CSR's training require ongoing training throughout their career?

1. technology
2. products and processes
3. communication and interpersonal skills


define seamless process

smooth process designed so that a customer is not inconvenience by - or even aware of- the steps involved in fulfilling the customers request.


What is a security feature typically used for policy-owners to confirm their identities before making routine changes and requests through automated systems?

their assigned a login and password or personal identification number (PIN)


What is web callback?

allows customers to click on an icon at a website and request that a CSR call the customer on the tele-phone.


what is web collaboration?

a technology that enables participants to 'meet' at a website, synchronizing their browsers and explore the website together, communicating with each other in real time.


What an automatic call distributor? (ADC)

it can be programmed to route called based on the skills necessary to process the request.


what process is used by the ADC?

the skill-based routing (SBR).
the call is transferred to the most appropriate CSR
based on the caller's answered to questions.


What is a customer relationship management (CRM) program?

delivers products, services, distribution channels, and communication methods that the company's most valued customers want.


what are 3 benefits for the insurer when using a CRM program?

1. learns from every customer interaction
2. uses what has been learned to anticipate customer needs
3. offers products and services to satisfy those needs.


what is an irrevocable beneficiary?

a life insurance beneficiary who's designation as a beneficiary cannot be cancelled by the policyowner unless the beneficiary gives written consent.


Who typically check whether the life insurance policy specifies an inrrevocable beneficiary?

the CSR


What is meant by the action of talking points?

a list of important iteams that employees refer to using their own words.


what is a script?

a written dialogue or set of systematic instructions that employees usually follow work-for-word.
-ie. legal explanations


Name 6 common nonfinancial transactions that can be changed on a policy.

1. address and name changes
2. policy ownership changes
3. beneficiary changes
4. premium payment changes
5. insurer producer changes
6. life insurance coverage changes


which changes must typically be done in writing?
side note: they are all varified with signature matches

1. policy owner changes + appropriate form
2. address and name changes, but can also be done on the phone
3. beneficiary changes-


define an automatic payment plan

the policyowner designates a bank account from which the insurer will make regular withdrawals and either use the withdrawn funds to pay the premiums or deposit the money of annuities.


what is an orphan policy-owner?

people who do not currently have a relationship with a producer


Name some typical life insurance coverage changes a policy owner can do

1. increase or decrease the monetary amount of coverage
2. add a policy rider


what is a policy rider?

an amendment to an insurance policy that expands or limits the benefits payable under the policy.


Name 5 common financial transactions that can be changed on a policy

1. investment fund allocations
2. life insurance policy surrenders
3. annuity surrenders
4. policy loans
5. dividend payments.


does an insurance company require investment fund allocation changes to be in writing?

some do, some let policyowners make changes by tele-hone or website.


what requests can a CSR process for investment fund allocation changes?

1. reallocate currently invested money from one investment fund to another
2. allocate future premium payments amount investment funds.


What is required by a policyowner when they wish to surrender a life insurance policy for the policy's net cash surrender value?

submit a signed surrender request form.
- some require the policyowner return the surrendered policy with the request.


What is the role of the CSR when a request for life insurance policy surrender is received?

notifies the AOR about the pending surrender and reviews the benefits of keeping the policy in force with the disadvantage of surrendy the policy with the owner.


To process the policy surrender what does the CSR calculate?

the net cash surrender value and arranges for payment of that amount to the owner.


What are some common additions when calculating the Net cash surrender value?

1. cash value of paid-up additions
2. accumulated policy dividends
3. advance premium payments.


What ares some common subtractions when calculating the net cash surrender value?

1. outstanding policy loans
2. accrued policy loan interrest
3. surrender charges


are cash surrenders available for immediate annuities or for deferred annuities that have entered the payout period?



what happens in a partial surrender

the contract owner withdraws only a proportion of the annuity accumulated value instead of surrendering the contract entirely.
the withdrawals may be subject to mortality charges, surrender charger and income taxes.


When does an insurer require a written request for policy loans?

when it amounts for more than the agreed monetary amount. Anything below, can be approved over the phone. `


name 5 types of dividend options payouts

1. cash
2. apply for them to pay some of or all policy premiums
3. apply the dividends to repay some or all of a policy loan
4. use the dividends to purchase additional insurance.
5. leave on a deposit with the insurer to collect interest.


define a policy replacement

the purchase of one life insurance policy or annuity contract using money received from the surrender of another life insurance or annuity contract.


what is an internal replacement

a new policy or annuity contract is purchased from the same insurer


what is an external replacement?

the policy owner or annuity contract owner purchases a new policy or annuity from a different insurer.
the replacing company notified the original insurer and provides details information about the applied0for policy or annuity.


define a reinstatement

the process by which an insurer puts back in force a policy that lapsed because of nonpayment of renewal premiums.


if the policyowner has surrendered the policy, do they have a right to reinstate the policy?



does an insurer have an obligation to reinstate a policy just because an insurer has included a reinstatement provision in that policy?

the reinstatement application is forward to u/w from CSR.


in which specific case can the CSR may be authorized to approve the reinstatement and what do they need?

CSR obtains from the policy administration system the amount of back premiums due and the outstanding premium loans payable.


Why do companies have a procedure for handling customer complains

designed to comply with regulatory requirements, minimize risk of lawsuit, and improve CS


What is a complain management system?

it consists of the processes and procedures for recording, evaluating, and taking action on complains.


What is a complaint team?

a work group dedicated to resolving customer complains.


what information is documented for complaint handling?

1. name of CSA handling complaint
2. date and time
3. source of complain
4. name of complaning party, and identity information
5. company units involved
6. nature of complaint
7. company unit responsible for resolving complaint
8. writing acknowledgement to complainant stating companies decision, and options available for appeal
9. referrals to legal or compliance unit for review
10. any actions taken to investigate
11. all communication with complaining party.


what is the term given to the process of ensuring that policies do not lapse but remain in fore as long as possible



What is the process of up-selling?

the promoting a more powerful, more enhances, or more profitable product than the one a customer originally considered.


What is the process cross-selling

identifying a customers needs for additional products during or after selling a primary product and then promoting complementary products, that combined, provide a more complete solution for the customers needs.


define how member services (group CS) is different from CS for personal life

1. engages in extensive recordkeeping activities.
2. provides information and answers questions about the plans eligibility requirements, benefits, and provisions.
3. works with group representatives or the plan administrator to resolve problems quickly.


what are some typically duties of member service has during the installation of new group insurance policies?

1. provide information regarding plans eligibility requirements, contract provisions, benefits and premiums
2. establish the policy' records,
3. processing life insurance enrollment cards completed by group members
4. issuing certificates of life insurance coverage to the policyholder for delivery to covered group insured.


What happens when the policyholder of a group insurance product does not renew its group contract?

1. the plan terminates
2. member service unit closes the file
3. informs group insureds of their rights, if any, regarding the plan termination.


Who handles group insurance conversion request and annuity transfer request from group members who are no longer eligible to participate in a group plan?

member services.
this happens when employees are terminated, or no longer a member of an eligible class of empolyees


What is a moment of truth?

an instant when the insurer has an opportunity to creates a good or bad impression in the customers mind.


Name 4 steering control mechanisms used in customer service.

1. policy and procedures
2. authority levels
3. performance standards
4. training


Name 2 concurrent control mechanisms in customer service

1. real time monitoring
3. electronic dashboards that provide real-time statistics on performance results.


Name 5 feedback control mechanisms in customer service

1. performance measurements
2. customer complains and satisfaction survey
3. customer focus groups
4. producer feedback groups
5. mystery shopping.


what is a qualitative performance measurement?

focuses on behaviours, attitudes, or opinions to determine how efficiently and effectively processes and transactions are completed.


How do managers regularly monitor and evaluate customer service performances?

using qualitative performances measurements and quantitative performance measurements.


what is a quantitative performance measurement?

uses numerical methods to track and report results to determine how efficiently and effectively processes and transactions are completed.


what is the purpose of a customer satisfaction survey?

helps a company determine whether its products, services, and prices are meeting customer expectatioins.


Define the action of monitoring

the process used to review and evaluate the quality of CS interactions wither as they happen or after the fact.


what is mystery shoppers?

trained evaluators who contact CSRs and pretend to be customers. They mystery shopper conducts a transaction with the CSR and evaluates the CSR's communication skills, etiquette, product knowledge, clarity of explanation, attitude etc..


What is persistency rate?

the percentage of an insurer's business in foce at the beginning of a specified period that remains in force at the end of that period.


Name 2 examples of timeliness quantitative performance meaurements

1. turnaround time
2. first-contact resolution


Name 4 service level/accessibility to the customer quantitative performance measurements.

1. service level
2. number of blocked calls
3. average speed of answer
4. abandonment rate
5. misdirected calls


Name 2 quality quantitative performance measurements

1. quality rate
2. error rate


Name a productivity quantitative performance measurement

transactions completed.
(processes completed)


What is the benefit of customer service benchmarking?

Enables an insurer to determine how well it is performing a particular customer service process in relation to the benchmarked standard it aspires to achieve.