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Steve Ebner
Posted on Thursday, March 09, 2000 - 11:06 pm:   

In 1998 I worked primarily for one company. They kept me very busy. But in 1999 I worked primarily for another company. They did not keep me as busy, but I made more per day working for them. You will not find me saying anything bad about either company as my general experience with both companies has been positive. I have had an ocassional bad assignment like the one where I was promised $420.00 a day in Oklahoma and paid less than $700 for ten days or the two in Virginia Beach where I was working primarily for the wrong carrier (really not interested in explaining further right now). But I wish to make it plain that even though I may be working primarily for one company, I am too smart, too proud, and too good to let any company take me for granted (or at least two out of three). I spent fifteen years looking for the right business to get into and claim as my own business. I am not willing to surrender my independence. Your visitor asked a good question, one I have struggled with, but I have to come out on the side that says I must be no one company's flunkie, no one carrier's stooge, no slave to bosses who know half what I do about life. Don't ask me to live in a State Farm ghetto or ply my trade in an East Coast territory. I will remain an independent, and even if that means I am an employee of any company for a time (or for the next fifteen years), I will remain on an extra list or two to leave my options open.
Trent Massey
Posted on Thursday, March 09, 2000 - 11:05 am:   

You guys have it right. Everyone seems to be on the same lists so there isn't as many IA's. Realizing certain companies just want names to market theirs, I have asked one or two vendors to remove me from their roster. I've also removed myself from other companies who are not showing interests in protecting the IA either with the fee schedule, poor working arrangements, or not requiring higher standards amongst their deployment group. I will not work for companies either who lie to their people, something I caught happening last year.

In a meeting I had with one LARGE vendor employer, they have found experience with certain other employers a negative. It seems one vendor in particular has a reputation for repeatedly working unskilled adjusters, and when your resume includes this experience, this LARGE vendor might classify you as such. Having learned this just recently, I will no longer work for these employers with bad reputations. The other bad apples of their group could bring you down, as told to me.

When you are loyal to one company you must be comfortable with that company's reputation it enjoys in the industry. Don't listen to the owners of that company because they will certainly tell you how great they are, etc., etc. Just ask other companies, team leaders, or other personnel of the insurers. I had a team leader back up what the LARGE vendor told me so it wasn't hard to decide who not to work for in the future.

As for me, I won't put all my eggs in one basket yet. I think you should work for a few different vendors to see whom you like best and whom likes you best. Eventually, narrow your own roster to a few companies that you believe give you the best opportunities for work you will enjoy. Some people choose a core team assignment when they are tired of mixing it up. I have even considered this once I am comfortable with one and a good situation is offered me.
Tom Weems
Posted on Wednesday, March 08, 2000 - 5:49 pm:   

Dave, I wish it were true that the idiots get weeded out but I keep seeing some of them over and over again.

Mr. (or Ms.) newbee, take the word "independent" verrrrrry seriously. The vendors use your name on the list to market their services. That does NOT mean they will call you. This is a business that requires marketing just like any other.
Posted on Monday, March 06, 2000 - 8:15 pm:   

Each of us has to follow the path that we feel is correct for us. In the olden days, (and still in some countries), an employee was valued by the employer. As such, there was a fierce loyalty that was shared by both. In today's workplace this is all but fogotten.

If one had a steady workplace, and could earn a decent living from staying with one employer this is fine. However, the nature of our trade is such that this seldom happens. Unless you are employed by one of the larger Independent Adjusting firms.

We, therefore, are forced to widen our client base by listing ourselves with local, regional and national companies to obtain work. This accounts for the supposed 10,000 adjusters when in truth there are less than 1000 because we all are on everyones list.

So,to answer your question, the companies will call upon their dedicated core people initially and then the flood gates will open as they are forced , by contract, to supply people. Sometimes they do so with complete disregard to the capabilities or experience of these people. One or two storms will always weed out the ones that are prefered from those that are discarded.

Almost all of us are listed in many places, and we work for whom we prefer, when we wish to. That's the nature of an Independent. The companies know this and while they are not always sympathetic towards you, they do accept the practice.

"Unto thine own self , be true" Shakespeare
Roy Cupps
Posted on Monday, March 06, 2000 - 8:09 pm:   

A visitor has sent me this question

I have been a indipendent catastrophe adjuster for one year. I continually read of adjusters working for more than one company. I would love to remain loyal to one company but the loyalty does not pay bills if the company cannot muster enough work. I would like to become more marketable but at the same time I don't want everyone I think I am a fly by night employee. Can you make any reccomendations on how to approach this matter. Also what are industry attitudes towards this subject.

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