5 Tips for New Adjusters

February 23, 2021

When you’re a new adjuster, there are so many things you’ll learn later in your career that you wish you would have known in the beginning. It can be stressful when you’re out in the field after your training, so we’ve gathered 5 tips from a seasoned insurance adjuster to help you feel prepared.

 

1. Invest in tools

The following tools are a huge help!

Laser measurer 

This tool will ensure you get exact measurements on your inspections and saves you so much time. Use this to measure walls, ceiling heights, fence length, or anything else that will need to be measured. The Bosch BLAZE 100 ft. Laser Distance Measurer is a great option! 

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Bosch-BLAZE-100-ft-Laser-Distance-Measurer-GLM-30/205910686 

Goat roof assist

This tool is important for your safety on a roof. These anchor to the roof to provide extra stability while you complete your roof inspection. If you’re a two-story steep adjuster, this tool is a must. Another option would be a Roof Ridge Hook if you have a ladder that can be hooked onto it. 

https://www.thegoatsteepassist.com/the-goat-steep-assist/

Rope and harness

Another set of tools to aid in your safety. The rope and harness will save you from falls and ensure the completion of your roof inspections. You can never be too safe when preparing for your roof inspections. 

Check out the link below to find an example of a good rope and harness set up. 

https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/climbing-harness.html

Telescopic ladder 

These ladders are great for saving space. They’re lightweight and very durable. A standard. They can adjust to any height that you would need and are easily transportable. Make sure that when you travel with them that they’re stored correctly to avoid breakage. 

 

2. Do not overschedule

Do not schedule too many inspections, especially in the beginning

As a new adjuster, you’ll need time to complete your processes effectively and efficiently. Overscheduling will leave you no time to travel to your appointments, complete paperwork, make calls, and it could lead to mistakes. If you’re rushing to your appointments you run the risk of being late. Start out at a slow and steady pace and slowly add more work to your schedule.

 

3. Leave room in your schedule

Along the same lines as not overscheduling, be sure to leave some cushion in your schedule. When working on a catastrophe, many people will have significant damage to their property. They want it fixed as soon as possible and, most likely, they do not want to wait. Unfortunately, you may not be able to make it out as quickly as they would like because of the increased demand of claims. 

Now, most claim holders understand that you may not be able to make it out in the next few days. This is the reason why you should leave spaces in your schedule for the small number of policyholders who request their inspection take place sooner than suggested. 

Leaving this time for your customer will decrease stress and boost your customer service because you were able to assist the policyholder so quickly! 

Scheduling appointments 

Know the location of the claim holder. Do you have other appointments that are closer to that destination scheduled on a different date? Will you need to set up appointments with a third-party contractor for that claim? Is there any task that needs to be completed after this appointment? 

Asking these questions for your inspections will ensure you’re creating an efficient work schedule! Remember, do not sacrifice quality over quantity. If mistakes are made such as missing damage or lack of documentation, you may have to take a second trip to your policyholder’s property.

 

4. Make paperwork a priority

Leave at least one day a week for paperwork

Not setting aside a day for completing your paperwork for your claims will leave you drowning in paperwork. You need time to go over your claims, label the photos, write estimates, make calls, write checks, verify extra information, and more! A paper day is ensuring you’re completing your work efficiently and with accuracy. 

You may think you won’t need to take a day for filing your paperwork, but it’s necessary. Again, you will be drowning in paperwork if you don’t set aside time for it. You will not regret it! 

Write scope notes

When you’re at your policyholder’s property, write detailed notes, known as scope notes. Any good adjuster will take detailed scope notes at their inspections. Vague notes won’t help you in the long run; the more detailed you are will help you later on when you’re going over the claim with the policyholder. You will be able to make an accurate estimate for your policyholder and you’re less likely to miss the details.

 

5. Build in time for phone calls

Create a timeframe to make calls

Whether your time frame is 12–5, 3–5, or 9–12, have a time frame your policyholders know they can reach you and expect a call back. You will have a very busy schedule when you’re working for a catastrophe. Whether you’re traveling to inspections, completing inspection, on a roof, or filing your paperwork, you don’t want to be bombarded with phone calls from your policyholders. 

Communicate to your policyholder that you have a specific time you can take calls and return calls. This will lessen the calls you get during peak times of your day and you’ll be able to complete your work without having any disruptions. 

Purchase a business phone

Another tip we suggest is purchasing a phone that you can receive calls from your policyholders. At the end of a work day you can set this aside and not receive calls on your personal device! 

**Bonus tip** 

Make a to-do list every day. You will have processes to complete throughout the day—sit down and create a checklist/to-do list so that you don’t forget any work that needs to be completed.