How long to write a letter?

Would it surprise you if I said 454 days?

454 days to write a letter containing 10 lines of text and it wasn’t trying to sell me anything, just tell me that something had changed.

Let me explain, over here in the UK you get income tax relief on life insurance policies. So the cost of policy can change if the income tax rate changes.

The then Chancellor, one Rt. Hon. Gordon Brown, decided to change the rate and announced this change on the 21/3/07 and the change would come into force on the 6/04/2008, so he gave us over 1 years notice.

So the upshot of this is, the price (premium) I am paying would change from this date.

So when did my life insurance company get around to telling me of this change? today the 17/06/2008 or 454 days after they knew it was coming.

So my insurers write to tell me the price will change but it’s because of Government policy. Did they take the opportunity to tell how much this change will cost me? You guessed it no!

Why did they bother to write so late? probably because they started collecting increased premiums from customers and some queried the cost, it then came to light that the company should have told all its’ customers of the price increase, they are legally required to tell customers over here in the UK.

In these days of customer databases and single customer views, where a single click can get you a list of customers and contact details, how can it take 454 days to write a letter?

I’m hedging my bets that this can happen when a business doesn’t understand its’ processes or the relationship it has with its customers. (focus on collecting the money first and tell them later!)

At 454 days for a letter I am worried as to how long they would take to pay out, if my relations ever needed it.

Am I worried how much of my premium is paying for life insurance and how much is paying for the waste in an organisation that takes 454 days to write a letter? You bet!


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