Josh Stirpe – Safeco Insurance™ earns third call center certification

Safeco Insurance earns third call center certification
from J.D. Power and Associates

http://www.safeco.com/about-safeco/news-detail/call-center-certification-2011/2237832088462

Seattle, Wash. (July 20, 2011) — For the third time this year, Safeco Insurance™ call centers have been recognized for customer satisfaction excellence under the J.D. Power and Associates Call Center Certification ProgramSM. First it was our service and claims call centers and now, Safeco’s sales call center has demonstrated a strong commitment to provide “An Outstanding Customer Service Experience.”

“One of the ways we make it easy for customers and agents to do business with Safeco is through our commitment to outstanding customer service,” said Mike Hughes, Safeco Insurance president. “We are proud to serve our customers with a sharp focus on excellence that has resulted in three call center certifications from J.D. Power and Associates.”

To become certified, Safeco’s sales call center, which serves customers across the country on behalf of independent agent partners, successfully passed a detailed audit of more than 100 practices that encompass the call center’s customer satisfaction measurement and analysis strategies, recruiting, training, employee incentives, quality assurance capabilities, and management roles and responsibilities.

As part of its evaluation, J.D. Power and Associates also conducted a random survey of Safeco Insurance customers who recently contacted its sales call center, located in Liberty Lake, Wash.

“In achieving certification, Safeco’s sales call center has shown that it provides consistently outstanding service to customers through the phone channel,” according to J.D. Power and Associates. “Call center representatives receive notably high ratings for courtesy, but it is also worth noting that their customers rated them exceedingly well regarding their knowledge.”

“Our sales team works diligently on behalf of independent agents,” said Josh Stirpe, director, Safeco Sales. “It’s our focus on delivering Safeco’s promise to provide expert advice and superior service that sets us apart from the competition.

“Listening and responding to customer and agent feedback is a critical component of the Safeco Sales approach,” Stirpe added. “We are very proud to achieve J.D. Power and Associates certification for the first time.”

For certification status, a call center must also perform within the top 20 percent of customer service scores, which are based on benchmarks established in J.D. Power and Associates’ cross-industry customer satisfaction research. The evaluation criteria include the customer service representative’s courtesy, knowledge and concern for the customer; promptness in speaking to a person; and timely resolution of the problem or request. Additionally, the experience with the automated phone system is evaluated based on the clarity of the information provided, the ease of navigating the phone menu prompts and the ease of understanding the phone menu instructions.

Since achieving certification for its sales call center in Liberty Lake, Wash., Safeco Insurance has added an additional sales call center in Golden, Colo.

About Safeco Insurance

In business since 1923 and based in Seattle, Washington, Safeco sells insurance to drivers and homeowners through a network of independent agents and brokers in eight regions throughout the United States.

Safeco is part of Liberty Mutual Agency Corporation, a strategic business unit of Liberty Mutual Group, consisting of property and casualty and specialty insurance carriers that distribute their products and services primarily through independent agents and brokers. Liberty Mutual Group ranks 82nd on the Fortune 100 list of the largest U.S. corporations based on 2010 revenue. The company has financial strength ratings of A (Excellent) from the A.M. Best Company, A2 (Good) from Moody’s Investors Service, and A- (Strong) from Standard & Poor’s.

For J.D. Power and Associates 2011 Call Center Certification ProgramSM information, visit http://www.jdpower.com.

Safeco Earns Third

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