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Small Commercial Agents Value In-Person Visits from Carrier Reps, Hanover Study Says

Technology can't replace in-person meetings among this cohort, the company says.

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Looking for information on how to improve its small commercial agents' experience, The Hanover (Worcester, Mass.) commissioned a survey of them from The Pert Group (Farmington, Ct.)

The biggest finding, according to The Hanover, is that personal contact with local underwriters ranks above all electronic means of communication in terms of building a relationship between customer service representatives and carriers.

"While our business has undergone tremendous changes in recent years as a result of technology, one thing has remained the same—personal interaction with knowledgeable underwriters is a key component to doing business," Michael Keane, president of small commercial for The Hanover, says in a statement. "With this in mind, we continue to make investments in our operating model not only to offer access to important technological capabilities, but to provide our agent partners with the access to local underwriting decision makers with authority that they want and deserve."

This could be because CSRs believe underwriters understand their role within the agency more than any other carrier representative, with 94 percent sharing this view. The Hanover adds that even before conducting this survey, it began redeploying underwriters in the field.

A call to the Hanover inquiring about the sample size of the survey was not returned in time for publication.

Nathan Golia is senior editor of Insurance & Technology. He joined the publication in 2010 as associate editor and covers all aspects of the nexus between insurance and information technology, including mobility, distribution, core systems, customer interaction, and risk ... View Full Bio

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