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Is your WorkCover agent any good?

When you took out WorkCover insurance for the first time, you would have selected one of WorkSafe’s agents to manage your premiums and any claims you might have. There are five WorkSafe agents; Allianz, CGU, Employers Mutual (EML), Gallagher Bassett and Xchanging.

Did you make a good choice? Is your WorkCover agent any good? It’s a good question, but it leads to a more important question: Good at what?

To answer that, it’s important to know what a WorkSafe Agent is.

What is a WorkSafe Agent

Firstly, what they are not: They are not your WorkCover insurer. Some of them (CGU, Allianz) are insurance companies, but they are not WorkCover insurer. The only WorkCover insurer in Victoria is WorkSafe Victoria. WorkSafe set your premiums, they bank the premiums, and any claim costs you incur will come out of WorkSafe’s bank accounts.

WorkSafe have a panel of five agents that are basically there to do a couple of things. The first is to collect the premiums, and the second is to manage any claims. In case you’re wondering, the claim management component of the agents is by far the bigger piece of work.

What should they be good at (part 1)?

As far as WorkSafe is concerned, they should be good at collecting premiums, and at managing claims. That’s what they are paid to do. WorkSafe pays the agents a fee which is based on the number and (premium) size of the employers that the agent manages. They then also reward, or penalise, the agents based on their performance.

WorkSafe measure the agents’ performance in many ways, but it can be split in to a few main themes:

    •  Returning injured workers to work
    •  Managing the sustainability of the scheme (i.e. ongoing claim costs)
    •  Customer Service (how happy are injured workers and their employers, with the way the agent interacts with them)

In a future blog post, I’ll talk about how each of the agents perform against these measures.

What should they be good at (part 2)?

Of course, what WorkSafe think the agents should be good at, and what you think the agents should be good at might be two different things. Though some areas will overlap (e.g. your employees having a safe and sustainable return to work), other areas might be very different. How responsive are they when you try to get in touch? How much do they know about your business, and your industry? If you are relatively inexperienced when it comes to WorkCover claims, how well do they explain the process, your rights and obligations?

I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on this. What do you want from your WorkCover Agent, and how good are they at delivering it?

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