Insured customers

Subject: Insured customers
From: cdavidso -at- IONLINE -dot- NET
Date: Mon, 3 May 1999 15:37:57 -0400

Hi everyone,

For the past four months I've been writing policy and procedure manuals
for a relatively small agricultural insurance company. Until recently
our conventions document called for the word "customer" in reference to
people who had purchased coverage, and "grower" for farmers in general
(with or without insurance coverage). Management wants to move the
company as a whole toward the "industry norm", which apparently includes
referring to insured customers as "the insured" or "insureds".

I find this awkward and off-putting, and I also feel that this
undermines our customer focus. Also, while it may be the norm to refer
to "insured" and "insureds" in the policy itself, I'm not sure it's
necessary or appropriate for internal documents.

Any thoughts? I'd especially like to hear from other folks who are
writing for the insurance industry. How do you refer to your insured
customers (and prospective, as-yet-uninsured, customers?)in your
internal policy and procedure documents?

Please feel free to reply off-line.

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