Insurance and financial planning
Recommendations report in group personal insurance
After analyzing the relevant information about the group to be insured and, if applicable, the insurer’s renewal notice, the representative in group personal insurance, group insurance plans, or group annuity plans will be able to give his client a report containing the analysis of the group insurance plan and his recommendations.
If the client doesn’t have this kind of plan, the representative could advise him on whether or not to set one up. If the plan is being renewed or periodically reviewed, he could recommend that the client keep it, revise it, or work with a different insurer.
Depending on the circumstances, the representative’s recommendations aim to:
- Improve the plan’s coverage, service, or administration
- Modify the coverage or benefits of the plan with the current insurer
- Initiate a call for tenders among potential insurers
- Validate or not validate the renewal proposed by the current insurer
The representative’s obligations in terms of making recommendations are often intangible, but take on a more concrete shape with the recommendations report. It’s therefore essential that the report be complete and answer the key questions that a reasonable reader could have about the suitability of the recommendations.
The recommendations report should include one or more tables that clearly illustrate several features, including those listed below.
- Experience rating comparison
- Community rating comparison
- Current cost of both items, if there is a plan in effect
- Comparison of options and respective costs
- Proposed price in the scope of a new plan
These tables must allow the client to compare each insurer’s competitiveness and ability to meet his needs.
The report must also include information on the insurers, including the customer service they provide, the reasons behind the recommendation of one or more insurers, the insurer that offers the best value as well as items on which the representative relied to create the report.
A list of items to include in the report can be found in the tool Group personal insurance recommendations
The group insurance representative’s recommendations report must include not only factual information but also all qualitative information that may influence the client’s final decision.
The representative may therefore add his own comments to the offer comparison table, including the considerations and implications that the client should include in his reflection that he may not have thought of without the representative’s help. By doing so, the representative will demonstrate his added value.
If the representative recommends going to the market, for example, he should justify the factors supporting this recommendation and inform the client of the financial and human resources that must be dedicated to this task and, potentially, to an insurer transfer, so that he has all the relevant information at his disposal when he makes his decision.
The analysis and recommendations report is a valuable tool for providing various information to the client. This written report must be signed and dated by the representative and provided to the contact person identified by the client. The representative must also provide the client with explanations necessary for his understanding of the content. Also, upon a contract renewal, he must provide a new recommendations report to the client.
The report presentation meeting allows the representative to see whether or not the submissions received respond to the client’s expectations and to highlight his services. It can also provide an opportunity to explain the concept of community rating, including the reasons why the cost of the plan may increase even if the plan is in good financial health.
A clear, precise and well-presented recommendations report…
- enables the client to make decisions
- is a true anchor point for the trusted relationship between the representative and his client, because it demonstrates the quality of the representative’s professional approach
The representative must keep a copy of the recommendations report in the client’s file, along with proof that the report was delivered to his client, such as a signed copy of the report or a confirmation of receipt.
Because the representative’s obligations follow him throughout his relationship with the client, his work doesn’t stop when the insurance proposal is signed.
The representative must actually support his client through the subsequent steps in the way described in the mandate with the client and based on the responsibilities of the various parties involved.
Written report on financial planning
The financial planner must prepare a written report on the financial planning he has conducted, sign and date it, then provide it to the client.
The report must be written in a clear and understandable way, simplifying concepts when necessary, because the financial planner must ensure that his client understands the various elements included in his report.
The report does not need to conform to a specific format, but given the necessity to meet his clients’ needs, the financial planner should plan to include the following items:
- Statement of the client’s primary concerns
- Exhaustive information, even if the planning covers only one part
- Data analysis
- Concrete, precise recommendations formulated around each concern
- Completion timeline and projections for the future
The financial planner must keep a copy of the recommendations report in the client’s file, along with proof that the report was delivered to his client, such as a signed copy of the report or a confirmation of receipt.