Almost three quarters of insurance companies have access to the Internet, according to a recent Internet Usage Survey conducted by the Life Communicators Association (LCA). Of the 135 respondents to the survey, 72 percent said their companies have access to the Internet. The bulk of those-66 percent-are neophytes on the Net, having had access for less than one year. Other survey results:
56 percent of companies have a World Wide Web home page.
The most popular uses for the Internet are to keep tabs on the competition, to provide information to the public, to keep up with technology, and to establish a corporate presence on the World Wide Web.
Are you in compliance? You are if you're a member of a new association, backed by the American Council of Life Insurance. The Insurance Marketplace Standards Association (IMSA) was created around six Principles of Ethical Market Conduct that members agree to uphold. They are:
1. To conduct business according to high standards of honesty and fairness,
2. To provide competent and customer-focused sales and service,
3. To engage in active and fair competition,
4. To provide advertising and sales materials that are clear, honest, and fair,
5. To provide fair and expeditious handling of customer complaints and disputes, and
6. To maintain a system of supervision designed to achieve compliance with these principles.
In addition, companies must complete a self-review and a mandatory third-party assessment. Companies will become IMSA members automatically upon submission of satisfactory assessment reports. Membership lasts three years. When it expires, the self- and independent assessment process must be repeated.
In Compliance is a new bimonthly newsletter for producers and field managers. Published by the Life InsuranceResearch Association (LIMRA), it will cover compliance and market conduct issues. Companies can purchase a one-year subscription on diskette for $2 per agent; the paper version starts at $17.97 per year with quantity discounts. Call (860) 298-3956.
Earning the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) designation after last December's examination were the following insurance conference planners: Pamela K. Brown, Million Dollar Round Table; Regina A. Earls, State Farm Insurance; Karyn L. Larson, Prudential Preferred Financial Services; and James R. Wolfe, National Council on Compensation Insurance.