Interspersed between unfavorable comments about carrier relationships and technology, agents responding to the DCC/IJ Independent Agency Survey late last year revealed some very specific recommendations.

Here are three for the suggestion box, describing what agents want:

  • “Two assigned underwriters and one available at all times—[and] maybe one CSR to answer emails immediately (or within 30 minutes). Easier phone systems (not voice response as you never know when you are out in public and need to call in) or the option for both VR and a number selection…Nicer customer service/underwriters. Just their demeanor over the phone can put you in a bad mood and make you not want to write business. More flexibility/true underwriting, especially if the agent has been around for a long time and knows the particular customer.”
  • “More webinars to train me on the latest tech they employ. And for the love of all that’s holy, record them and put them on a website so I can watch them when I have time after hours, rather than forcing me to block out time that could be used to write policies during the workday.”
  • “I want carriers to reprice an account after it is on their books for four years of more. Move it to the new business section, not renewal underwriting. Their insistence on getting a certain percentage increase every year makes the account a sitting duck for any new proposal from a new carrier.”