We had our business insurance with St. Paul for years with little issues. Then they merged with Travelers and it went to hell as the Traveler's "way" took over. Even though we had little in losses, the premiums went sky high every year for no apparent reason and the flexibility to accomodate special needs vaporized. Claims services crumbled.
Driven to find someone else, we found another carrier that was financially larger and stronger and with less than half the premiums and twice the customer service and flexibility.
TRV recently re-solicited our business until they found out their best premium would be 4x our current rates. Our current carrier hasn't raised rates in 3 years.
With competition like this, TRV is dead in business insurance. As long as they continue operating as they do, we will not reconsider them.
I do not hold a position in the stock but thought stockholders might want to know why the company is treading water. If the Bush administration's anti-trust hadn't let so many anti-competitive mergers take place, this picture would be even worse. A real disgrace all the way around.
I do not work for Travelers, but I can tell you that your current company may be losing money on you. I wonder why there have been so many companies that have went under in insurance?? But Travelers is still around. It's just like any other business, must make money to survive.
You mentioned that the claims service deteriorated. Please don’t blame the front line folks. They are working as hard as the can. However, their hands are tied now. TRV has product development groups who run the claims departments in all lines. Most of these folks have never handled claims on the front line. They are accounting, finance people or claims folks who weren’t very good to start with and they find a home off the front line. They couldn’t do 10% of the things that they require of the front line folks.
Each office is graded to a T. This causes great panic among the field management staffs. Each one is trying to out do the other. They try to give themselves tough names like “the Bull Dog” in an attempt to gain a reputation as a tuff no nonsense “leader”. They will send out e-mails on Saturday afternoons calling for conference calls on Sunday. Calls that contain zero substance and that could have waited until Monday morning. With these tight rules from the HO folks, the front line folks are left with little discretion. They are to handle claims that fit into a nice spread sheet number as far as the time it takes to resolve, amount paid, etc. then, they send around some clowns who again either never handled claims or were terrible when they did handle claims. You can’t have a respectable debate over the file content/grade with these folks or else you are labeled a trouble maker or defensive and you will lose your job.
They funny part is that the company can’t figure out why their turn over is so high. One head VP gave a long talk about how people are replaceable and the need to keep the fear of termination on the front burner. Later in his conversation, he was asked what keeps him up at night. He responded that he can’t figure out why the company has such high turn over(??). Treat people like rented mules and that’s what you get.