Alison O'Hearne

Employee Profile - Alison O'Hearne, Team Leader, Motor Claims Response

Posted by Alison O'Hearne at 10:31 AM

Tell us about your current role and what you enjoy about it
I am a team leader of 10 claims advisors managing day to day activities in dealing with new motor claims registration.  I enjoy being part of a team, not only with my own team and in developing their skills but also as part of a group of team leaders looking for ways in which we can improve and develop both our processes and our people.  We come up against a new challenge almost daily which makes the role exciting, constantly moving forward. 

What do you do in a typical working day?
Every day I monitor team performance and individuals to develop within their own role through coaching and feedback.  I conduct reviews and audits to ensure correct procedures are being followed and adhered to.  I support my manager by looking at ways in which we can improve our department’s performance and looking for solutions to real time issues that may occur.  I review work loads and ensure we have the time and skill available to complete these.  I plan ahead booking in off phone activities, reviews, report completion etc to ensure other departments can plan ahead to meet customer demands in availability. 

How does your role fit into the wider department/company?
I ensure that my team are fully up to date with procedures and in their abilities to deal with new motor claims through training in order to meet our customer’s needs.   As the first port of call for our customers, our advisors need to constantly develop their technical and personal skills and I help them to achieve this.  As part of a team leader group, I look for ways in which we can make the customer experience more efficient and beneficial to them while maintaining the interests of the company.

What do you enjoy most about your job?
I really enjoy seeing my team develop their own skills through the input that I have had.  I get a great sense of achievement and satisfaction watching someone put to use the skills I have helped them to develop.  I personally love to be given a challenge, something that takes me out of my comfort zone where I can explore new skills and ways of thinking.  This gives me a buzz in my working role which makes it worth while.  I like to achieve something and see tangible results from my commitments and hard work.

What is the most challenging part of your role?
Helping my team deal with change.  It is a constant in this business as we are always striving to be the best in providing for our customers, our people and our stakeholders so we are constantly looking at how we can improve.  Dealing with change can be difficult if you’re used to something, so it’s how we embed change and how we communicate the need for change to our teams that helps them understand why and that while it can be scary at times, it’s also exciting as it means doing something new of different for a different benefit.  

What do you need to be successful in your role?
You need to be influential, passionate and ready for a challenge! You also need to be sympathetic to both our people as well as our customers.  Having an understanding of how people react and the reasons why are beneficial. 

What have been your career highlights so far?
I have received Team Leader of the Month in the North award twice as well as a Director’s Award for Leading for Success.  It was great to have my work recognised and rewarded and it spurs you on to do well again.  However, it’s more often the smaller ‘wins’ that I remember most where I’ve helped someone get somewhere or achieve something they haven’t been able to do before or when a customer takes the time to say how grateful or happy they are with an outcome that you have instigated.

Why did you choose a career in insurance?
I needed a role that challenged me personally with a subject that involved a lot of different skills and abilities.   In this role I have to be customer focussed, people friendly, analytical, technically skilled and business minded in order to be successful.  Insurance can sound generic and very one dimensional but it isn’t, it’s a minefield of information that requires a lot of different processes in a lot of different areas with a huge skill set of people. 

Watch Alison's video here

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