One of the greatest challenges for an agency owner is understanding an appropriate workload for client service representatives (CSR). For many agency owners knowing the benchmark for the number of clients, policies, or premium to service is a valuable Key Performance Indicator (KPI).
Best practice numbers from a recent Big I study indicate average agencies generate $250,000 personal P&C commission revenue per service staff and $300,000 to $350,000 commercial P&C commission revenue per service staff. The commercial P&C average varies depending on the distribution of commercial clients between small commercial, mid-market, and large accounts.
Knowing other KPIs (for example, average commission rates, average premium per policy, and average policies per account) helps to better understand client service workload. To illustrate, let us assume an agency averages 15% commission per personal lines account, $1000 average premium per policy, and 1.8 average policies per account. This agency would see an average of approximately $270/commission per client (15% X $1000 X 1.8). For an average agency generating $250,000 personal lines P&C commission per CSR, the average workload would be approximately 926 clients.
The additional challenge of measuring client service workloads is understanding specific job responsibilities. For example, are CSRs strictly servicing clients and not being tasked with quoting and issuing new business? Does the agency have additional support staff to handle administrative tasks not requiring a licensed CSR? Is any part of the book serviced through carrier service centers? Does the agency fully utilize automation including agency management system download and client communication resources? Are clients utilizing self-servicing capabilities through an agency or carrier website? With maximum efficiency, it is not unrealistic to increase the target client workload by another 10%.
Determining the target client service workload will help an owner understand what revenue milestones will trigger the need for additional service staff. Too heavy of a workload can overburden a client service representative and may also hold back a growth-oriented producer who takes on client service requests not being handled by an overwhelmed service representative.
In addition, agency owners who realize a client service representative’s workload is below the average (or target), allows the CSR capacity to focus on revenue-generating activities. For example:
- Rounding accounts with new policies,
- Enhancing coverage on existing policies,
- Facilitating positive client Google reviews and Facebook recommendations,
- Coordinating win-back campaigns, and
- Administrating client satisfaction surveys to identify “at-risk” accounts.
Understanding client service workloads does have its challenges and limitations. Determining the appropriate workload targets and then managing them will help agency owners better ensure capacity for growth without taking on excessive overhead.
If you have any questions about CRS workload, please reach out SIA of Northern Ohio for additional assistance!