22 March, 2023
See all Claims jobs See all Glasgow jobs

From motorbikes to combine harvesters, private car owners to commercial fleets, the NFU Mutual Response Team is the first point of call for customers with an NFU Mutual motor insurance policy who’ve had a road traffic accident, vehicle theft or vehicle fire. We sat down with a few of the 50 people who work in the different Mutual Response teams in Glasgow to chat about what it’s like working on the front lines of motor claims at NFU Mutual.

It sounds like there’s quite a wide range of things that you cover - what makes this team so important to NFU Mutual?
“We’re the first people our customers speak to when they need to make a claim against their motor insurance, so we set the tone for the entire customer journey,” says Jamie McGhee, one of the members of the Mutual Response Team.

“Our role is important because for a lot of customers, they only realise how good their motor insurance policy is when they have to make a claim,” adds John Moore. “And how well we manage their claim can make all the difference between them renewing their policy with us in the future or not. I work in a team that deals with third parties and customers who don’t have an NFU Mutual policy, and they’re often equally shocked and impressed with how well we deal with their claim compared to their own insurer.”

“Our renewal rates are running at around 95%,” says Sarah Macfarlaine. “Even though so many things have become more difficult in recent years, like backlogs for garage parts and hire cars, our customers are staying with us. And that’s because we’re always trying to do the best we can for them.”

What does a typical day look like?
“Most of our work involves answering customer calls,” says Kyle Burechails, another Mutual Response Team member. “It might be from a customer at the side of the road after an accident, or maybe they’ve had an accident three weeks ago and are only just telling us about it now. Whether you’re working from home or in the office, the first thing you do in the morning is log onto the system and start to take those calls.”

“On each call, you need to be as empathetic as possible with the customer,” adds Rael Mason. “We get all the necessary training to help us do that – for example, how to handle different types of calls or help to understand different vehicle types.

There must be a lot to cover in that training! What else does it involve?
“As well as customer service skills, the first 8-10 weeks of training covers a lot of technical knowledge. You’re taught about underwriting and claims processing,” says Kyle. And thinking back to his experience when he first started, he points out that he didn’t have an insurance background when he joined NFU Mutual. “I found it really useful getting that basic foundation about policies and what insurance is.”

“But the majority of the training involves practice calls,” he continues. “That’s what really gives you the skills. In the last two weeks of training, you take live calls with real customers, but you don’t need be nervous as someone will be sitting next to you for support if you have any issues.”

So, after all your training, what makes your work enjoyable?
“For me, it’s the variety,” says Jamie. “No two calls are the same – because no two vehicles or customers are the same. You could be dealing with someone who’s quite shaken up after a road traffic accident, or someone who’s just hit a sheep in the middle of the countryside. So, you always have to think on your feet.”

“You also talk to people from all different walks of life.” Rael adds. “It could be a farmer in Ireland or someone on holiday in the Scottish isles. I once had someone who’s car had been attacked by a badger while it was parked on their drive – it had ripped the bumper off and scratched the paintwork!”

“Yes, I had someone whose car had been attacked by a cow,” says Sarah. “It just got angry with it! You never know what’s going to come up next.”

What’s the team culture like?
“There’s always someone on hand to help you with any questions you may have.” Rael says. “We work from home 80% of the time, and there’s always a Teams chat open, so if you have a question, you can reach out and someone will always come back with an answer.”

“It’s really helped us become more of a team,” adds Sarah. “Before, if you were in the office, you’d often only liaise with the person sitting next to you. But now there’s a bigger group of people you can turn to.”

“And socially too,” Jamie chips in. “Now you’ve got different people in the office on different days, it’s constantly rotating, so you don’t just gravitate to the same people. You get to know the wider team and have one-on-one time with more people.”

It sounds like you all enjoy working together – what is it about NFU Mutual that makes it a great place to work?
“It’s a very supportive company and they look after their staff,” says Rael. ” It’s the only company I’ve worked for where my manager is as invested in my development as I am. We sit down at the start of the year, set goals and plan how I’m going to achieve them. She is as keen as I am to develop my skills, and that’s something I’ve never seen before. It’s definitely something to do with the company culture.”

“They’re also very supportive in terms of staff wellbeing.” Sarah adds. “There’s an employee programme that gives people access to mental health facilities. And during the cost-of-living crisis, they gave everyone who earned up to £41,140k a £1,000 bonus to help them cope. They didn’t have to do that; it was really good of them.”

“They’re always looking out for the safety, wellbeing and happiness of the staff,” says Jamie. “Even when the pandemic struck, we were supplied with every piece of equipment we needed for home working - we felt really looked after.”

“They also supported me when I was home schooling my daughter during the lockdowns, so I had less time on the phone and was able to take time off when I needed it,” says John. “And there are plenty of opportunities to grow. We’ve had a lot of people move into different NFU Mutual teams. Complaints, Underwriting, Engineering, Best Practice – there’s a lot of scope for movement. You find when people want to further their career, they don’t tend to leave, they just move into other teams within the company - I think that’s a testament to how well people are treated at NFU Mutual.”

Would you like to join Mutual Response Team in Glasgow? Take a look at our current vacancies.



22 March, 2023
See all Claims jobs See all Glasgow jobs