What practical steps have you taken since signing up to the commitment to ensure professionalism standards are met?
As an outsourced service provider to some of the UK’s largest life and pension providers, I was delighted when I joined in April as COO to see that HCL IBS (Insurance Business Services) had signed up to this commitment last year. All new starters are now being enrolled on the Foundation Programme and more experienced staff are encouraged to consider their options for professional development. Our staff have provided positive feedback that we are committed to investing in their future which we see as providing strategic mutual benefits for them and us.
Have there been any challenges in the rollout so far, and, if so, what has proved difficult?
We had to amend contracts for new starters to include successfully passing the Foundation Programme as part of the sign off of their probationary period. The biggest challenge with all staff is striking the right balance between normal business as usual activities inclu-ding service delivery and providing opportunities for study. However, this commitment is well worth it for our staff and customer experience.
What difference should advisers expect to see as a result of this initiative?
More knowledgeable staff, particularly in our call centre, with a clearer understanding of our products and appropriate customer outcomes. We are implementing this as part of our focus on improving our customer and adviser end to end journeys through our organisation and proportion of calls being handled on a first point resolution basis. For me having our staff focused on delivering value to our customers and advisers is critical for our success.
Nick Dumonde is COO at HCL Insurance Business Services