Why Business Britain award JLT

JLT BIS - Solutions Provider of the Year 2007.


As the winner of Business Britain's Business Solutions Provider of the year 2007, please accept our congratulations to yourself and your team. What do you think being recognised in this way will mean to Jardine Lloyd Thompson?

We believe that the recognition given to us by Business Britain, as the Solutions Provider of the Year 2007, will greatly assist in our marketing efforts with our prospective clients. It is difficult to always convey how we propose to provide solutions for all the clients that approach us with their insurance problems and this award will certainly help us in this quest. We pride ourselves that clients who look to us for an insurance quotation will receive a cost solution to their problem. This is not always just pure insurance and sometimes, depending on the scale of the risk, the solution also requires the benefits of risk financing or risk prevention.

A strict criteria is adhered to when the Board of Directors at Business Britain decide upon a winner, one of these is the range of services provided. Could you describe the core range of services that JLT provides and how this may have contributed to the final decision of the judges to recognise you as the leading provider of Business Solutions?

We believe that because our staff themselves have adopted 6 core values, each of which deal with customer needs and providing excellence of service, is one of the key factors that may have persuaded the Board of Directors of Business Britain to select JLT Business Insurance as a candidate and a winner in their category. It is important to JLT that every customer who contacts us receives a prompt, professional and courteous welcome and that we in turn meet their expectations by providing a competitive price with a policy that meets their needs within a timeframe that is acceptable. We look for most quotations to be turned around within 48 hours and for the more complicated risks we provide a detailed programme with a timescale attached. It is this level of service to our clients that makes us different from the majority of other brokers.

Do you have any additional services that complement what you may describe as your core range of risk and insurance services and your employee benefits services?

We offer many services that complement our main risk and advice service. These range from a simplistic form of risk prevention or business continuity planning to financial investment and pensions advice. The most important thing that we do is look at a portfolio approach as quite often the simplest things are forgotten, for example in many small businesses a major issue is the main driver/owner/MD, without whose intellectual property or effort there may be no business! If it has anything to do with risk or insurance, JLT will have a solution.

In addition we focused on Customer Support. What do you think it was about JLT group in terms of communicating with your customers, which caused you to score so highly in this category?

At JLT we look at our customer service as one of the few things that differentiate between our competitors and us. We are constantly reviewing the type and level of service that we provide and try to tackle this in two basic ways, to provide information on our clients’ intranet sites that will allow everyone to access and download basic information on risk or policy type, and by encouraging clients to contact us to discuss their individual issues so we can advise them on the levels and types of cover that will be applicable for them. We are constantly asking for feedback on our service and this is summarised on a weekly and monthly basis. We ensure that both negative and positive feedback is provided to individuals within the operation and for me one quote sums up our JLT business team “Entirely due to your representative. He possesses the most important quality for such a sales person, and the one most often absent. That is, he does what he says he will, exactly when he says he will. Most impressive”

Marketing and promotion of the JLT group obviously plays a large role within your organisation, both internally and externally. Could you please comment on the factors, which have contributed, to your great success in regard to this aspect of your operation and also the business philosophy as a whole?

Marketing within JLT Group plays several different roles; clearly as a Plc company we have a role in marketing to the city and finance institutions, and on the other hand marketing from a PR perspective to ensure that our name and services are recognised within the wider financial market. In the area for which I am responsible marketing is key for the production of new business as it is the vital element that hopefully encourages people to visit our website, contact us by telephone, e-mail or even occasionally send us a letter.

In the affinity area we work entirely with partners whose brands endorse our products and therefore we are careful to ensure that we continue to represent the values of the brands that endorse us. In two or three cases we actually trade under the full branding of our partner and then it is imperative that we have and adopt the same values that the brand owner requires. Brands and endorsements are our livelihood and we take extra care to ensure our marketing is in full sympathy with those brands. To provide focus we use internal marketing personnel who work directly for and with the operating units, giving us greater control of what it placed in adverts, articles, etc. Our strength is in how we market and the principles that we use in the protection of our clients who entrust us with the security of their brand or endorsement.

What necessary steps must an organisation take with JLT in order to protect themselves against major disruptions and ensure business continuity and how easy are JLT’s solutions to implement?

Business continuity is an essential part of what we do for clients and therefore it is important that “even the cobbler has well cobbled shoes”. We are fortunate that we have a significant branch network throughout the UK and that we largely work off the same IT systems. It is therefore possible to move staff from one office to another and carry on trading through the same IT platform. We had a good example of this in mid-2007 when our colleagues in another office were flooded out of their premises in the centre of Gloucester. The next day a team was up and running in Birmingham where they were taking client calls, many of whom themselves were suffering the trauma of the summer floods. The plan operated for 4 days before they returned to their base and a full client service was offered during that period. These plans currently exist within each individual office and are tested and monitored at least on an annual basis. We do try to practice what we preach and I am confident that we have a robust plan to cater for all eventualities. For our call centre operations we also have a hot standby facility based in Leicester.

What are companies likely to come up against when planning their continuity and employee benefit strategies and what consultancy and support programmes can JLT offer organisations?

When devising their continuity plans companies are likely to come up against the logistical issues of their location being key to their trading position, and what could be done in the event of a major catastrophe where they may have to vacate the premises for many weeks. There is excellent research to show that there is a high level of company failure for those businesses that suffer a major catastrophe and have major disruption to their trading beyond a 6 month period. Our consultants will assist the client with their process from arranging an insurance policy that could “buy a competitor” or rent suitable alternative space in the area or indeed in one case where we arrange for the purchase of a mobile caravan, which was turned into a butchers shop! Everyone’s individual circumstances are different but our consultants are trained to walk our customers through a process that enables them to look at the alternatives available to them.

 

With regard to Employee Benefit strategies this can cover a whole area of provision of services from pension and financial advice to the selling off of a final salary plan. There are all sorts of employee benefits such as dental plans, share save schemes, discounted insurances via intranet sites, medical schemes, personal accident and sickness schemes, etc. Again, it is JLT’s job to identify what the client is trying to achieve and finding them the most cost effective and best route to an insurance or risk provided solution.



Mike Langton
Divisional Managing Director, Affinity Solutions
19 December 2007

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