Do you know your auditors?

Having a comfortable relationship with the auditors makes a tremendous difference for the producer and support personnel. When you know the auditor communications come easily and problems evaporate – great situation if you can access it.

Does the auditor understand your needs?

Producing business today can be a challenging enough task without having to spend extra time unraveling an issue created by misunderstandings and poor communications during an audit. There are sometimes going to be issues and potential issues that arise during the audit process. Having an insurance auditor who knows you and your agency can really help "cut the red tape" and get potential issues resolved up front instead of later. I once had a conversation with a policyholder who had spent a year trying to get an issue resolved. During our first conversation he wanted to be reassured that we were premium audit specialists and not providing this service as one of many other services provided. I was fascinated to hear his experience - an amazed to discover how a simple issue kept him in collections for over a year! There was a real mess for the agent, carrier, and policyholder that could have been avoided.

Do the auditors know how to solve "tricky" situations?

There are situations when client, bureau, underwriting, and producer outcomes need a delicate balancing. You need an auditor with a win-win mentality who understands how to execute the audit process in a manner that leaves all parties understanding the audit process and feeling they are in a in a "win" position.

Do you get predictable outcomes from your current audit process?

This is essential - you need to know that the person who audits your client will be professional, courteous, and patient, ready to explain all phases of the audit. If the same auditor can visit your insured each year it is a huge benefit for them and makes their business much more efficient. It is very important to develop a positive relationship with your auditor which comes from positive outcomes with your clients and the auditor making an effort to get to know you. This is a terrific way to do business and will allow you to focus on writing new business instead of dealing with audits. Once you have confidence in how your accounts will be treated you can relax and expand your book of business.

Are your auditors part of your team?

They should contact you when a situation needs attention the same way they would if they were your employees, and watch the exposure part of your book of business and make you aware of potential problems. This team approach is a powerful way to do business. Having audit services you understand and a clear explanation of rule applications will take a potential headache and turn it into a unique sales advantage for you, by being able to assure potential clients of the professional way they will be treated at audit time.

Do you have auditors who are strong communicators?

Communication can be a huge plus in resolving issues quickly. Your auditors should strive to take every call without voicemail and to return calls and emails right away if they do miss you. It can be challenging at times but makes a big difference in resolving open questions quickly and amicably. There are 3 parts to executing communications properly:

  • a. Contact you when needed if the auditor sees something they think you'd like to know they call you. It helps knowing each agent personally, since different people have different needs. The auditor must customize calling to each agent, and of course always call in the event of a specific potential issue you should be aware of.
  • b. Always available to answer your questions An important deliverable is to answer questions you may have on how to audit or classify a risk. The auditor should be happy to take these calls and welcome your calls anytime.
  • c. Answer calls instead of voicemail or return calls promptly if they do miss you.