Answer Financial Reviews | Glassdoor

Answer Financial Reviews

Updated April 23, 2018
164 reviews

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164 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "If you keep your sales at a certain level, you can work from home" (in 18 reviews)

  • "All inbound calls, no cold calling" (in 8 reviews)

Cons
  • "comp plan makes income inconsistant" (in 13 reviews)

  • "Employees have to pay for parking out of their paycheck" (in 6 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    "Fabulous place to work!!!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Right Answer Sales Agent in Knoxville, TN
    Current Employee - Right Answer Sales Agent in Knoxville, TN
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Answer Financial full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Paid training, laid back environment, phenomenal agent support. The directors and managers alike treat everyone with respect and understanding. Every new Insurance agent comes into their career scared, nervous and unsure. The management as well as the staff are extremely welcoming and caring when it comes to learning and developing in the Insurance business! From the newest agent to the directors and other management, everyone makes you feel like part of their family from day one. The level of help and support can not be compared to ANY place I have ever worked! To top all that off, Holidays are celebrated like no other company I have been a part of. It is a very special place to me.

    Cons

    I can not think of one downside to being in the Knoxville location except maybe that if you try to find an unhappy face...you can't. There is really no negative things to say at all.

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing what you are doing! Answer is the place I have always looked for in my career yet I didn't know that until you guys gave me the opportunity! The approach you guys all take to growing oneself not only as an agent, but as an individual really changes lives. Inspiration to become better at your craft as well as to become better as a person means a lot when you are new and trying find your place in a career. I am very blessed to be part of the Answer Financial family.


  2. "Good Insurance Career Start"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Answer Financial full-time

    Pros

    Stable. Can work from home.

    Cons

    Customers can often be stressful.

  3. Helpful (5)

    "Sales agent"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Agent
    Current Employee - Sales Agent
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Answer Financial full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    I really enjoyed working for this company. I'm grateful they hired me, thus putting bread on my table. They increased the pay an extra $5 per hour while I was here.

    Cons

    The job is not like it used to be. Always on edge on losing your job. There is not job stability here anymore. Managers always pull in agents to scare them into termination. It doesn't matter if you sell well or don't sell well. You're always in trouble. If they don't want you as an agent anymore, they will pick on your every move as an excuse to fire you. I lost hope in this company

    Advice to Management

    They don't understand the stress they cause their agents. Imagine if you were always on edge on losing your job. I wish I could see you do a better job at being an agent.


  4. Helpful (5)

    "Do not work here unless they make a major positive change"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Knoxville, TN
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Knoxville, TN
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Answer Financial full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    You get a paycheck on the 9th and 23rd of the month, free coffee in the break room, my coworkers were amazing people, it’s better than being homeless

    Cons

    They fail to tell new agents about the compensation plan until one of your last days in training. They push it off until then because once agents find out, they start bailing. The compensation plan is a booklet mostly in legal terms. To sum it up, that $15 an hour ‘salary’ is more like a draw because in order to see an extra penny of pay, you have to make at least that much in compensation before you get a bonus (you get paid between $15 & $150 per policy so do the math) and they have a variety of ways they can deduct from your bonus for things outside of your control. Let’s say you don’t meet the metrics to get a bonus one month, you will still be charged back for policies that cancel. So that $600 in cancellations you didn’t get paid for in the first place, they’re gonna deduct that from any current bonus you might get; making it extremely difficult to ever get ahead. In most situations, the policies cancel because the clientele we serve aren’t the best and they don’t pay their bills. I’m not sure how that’s the agents fault but we get charged for it. Most agents who have been there over a year have left the company. It’s sad when you’re concerned a veteran being there a year. Talking to agents who had been there awhile I was told it used to be a great company to work for - the agents were making money, the culture was one that fostered growth and having fun while working hard - now, it’s a culture of threatening agents jobs, finding ways not to compensate agents but loading on more & more expectations. I’m not exaggerating in saying, almost everyone in the sales department is actively looking for employment elsewhere. It’s a revolving door but the higher ups don’t seem to care. We voice concerns and it gets worse, not better. We’re told we’re valuable because we’re the only ones who bring in revenue to the company - well then treat us that way. Pay your agents fairly, don’t make it a culture of fear.

    Advice to Management

    Take a hard look at the turn over - to what your agents gave voiced concerns about - when dozens of agents say the same thing, you might want to take it seriously. Ruling by an iron fist isn’t going to motivate or keep good employees.


  5. Helpful (6)

    "Horrible Morale"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Answer Financial full-time

    Pros

    Relaxed atmosphere and regular food trucks

    Cons

    Entry level job with limited advancement over a long period of time

    Advice to Management

    Be better people


  6. Helpful (8)

    "Feels more like a collection agency job then a sales agency"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Agent in Encino, CA
    Former Employee - Sales Agent in Encino, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Answer Financial full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Ability to work from home. Free coffer & tea at the office. Nice building that was updated about a year or so ago. IT department is really good if you have computer issues.

    Cons

    - All top agents left in 2017
    - Director promises you management position in future, but then you find out from low performing agents(or simply everyone else for that matter) that she said that to them as well.
    - managers/directors always say how the leads are the BEST leads you can buy. Completely false.. the people you speak with are either pissed off that it took to king to get to you, and have been transferred 10 times, or they don’t even know who you are once they do actually get connect with you. So then you’re faced with trying to overcome an objection n that shouldn’t even be there
    - this place has really gone under the last 6 months-year (CEO leaving the company is never a good sign)
    - in all honesty, if they would just fix the quality of the calls that agents took, and spent more time on boosting moral, and making this a great place to work, I think this company could turn around. But unfortunately instead of doing something about a declining market in insurance, they just changed the compensation plan so they could stay afloat. As a result their agents left and now they have to rebuild

    Advice to Management

    Make the calls that agents take a better and more pleasant process/experience. Agents shouldn’t have to fight with customers about getting quotes. They should be happy and at least want to speak with us and see what we have to offer. Agents have to spend 5-10minutes if almost every call just to try and keep the customer on the phone, and explain who and why and what we are. THEY SHOUKD KNOW WHO WE ARE WHEN THEY GET TRANSFERRED TO A SALES AGENT! It’s not that hard Answer Financial! Get it together over there..

    “THE LEADS ARE WEAK”


  7. Helpful (6)

    "Numbers numbers numbers"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Representative in Knoxville, TN
    Current Employee - Sales Representative in Knoxville, TN
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Answer Financial full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Free food occasionally that's its

    Cons

    Management is out of touch with reality of being on the phones. They try and coach as if they were the best sales agent ever,but in reality they were not.

    Advice to Management

    Hire leaders to manage not people that just lay down and say yes. Stop robbing the agents that feed that feed the company. Reevaluate making agents pay back there hourly pay of 15$ that's a draw system and is lying by saying it's not

  8. Helpful (5)

    "this Answer Financial company is not egalitarian"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Answer Financial full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    there is nothing to add here

    Cons

    do not waste your time with this company or with Allstate

    Advice to Management

    be transparent. tell the truth, don't make people jump through hoops for no particular reason, be professional, be equitable, don't ask stupid questions for no particular reason


  9. Helpful (4)

    "On phone all day answering calls trying to sell insurance."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Insurance Agent in Knoxville, TN
    Former Employee - Insurance Agent in Knoxville, TN
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Answer Financial full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The people that I worked with are awesome! They were like a family; they would do anything for each other!

    Cons

    It was very hard to earn any commission and it felt like I was just on the phone constantly, 10 hours a day, not selling a thing!

    Advice to Management

    Make it easier to earn commission!


  10. Helpful (13)

    "An Honest Review of Answer Financial"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Insurance Sales Agent in Knoxville, TN
    Former Employee - Insurance Sales Agent in Knoxville, TN
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Answer Financial full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Background re: Applying and Interviewing

    I originally applied for the Internal Sales Position at Answer Financial’s Knoxville office in early June. After waiting a couple of days, I received a telephone call from one of their recruiters. After speaking with her, she requested that I come in for an in-person interview with the Sales Directors. This interview was scheduled for approximately a week later. Upon arriving at AFI’s offices, I was put through a three-panel interview: Panel 1 was a 1-on-1 with the Recruiter, Panel 2 was a 3-on-1 with members of the Sales Floor Management Team, and Panel 3 was an interview with the Sales Directors. From an inquisitive perspective, these interviews do a good job of allowing the AFI team to assess your likelihood of fitting into their “Five Star Sales” process. Out of the three panels, the Sales Directors’ panel was far and away the most important. In this panel, I was asked questions related to my ability to overcome objections and my likelihood to drive sales irrespective of the customer’s unique circumstances. It was in this panel that I was introduced to the two teams working within the Knoxville sales center - (a) Insurance Answer Center (Standard Customers) and (b) Right Answer Insurance Agency (Non-Standard / High Risk Customers). I was then informed that should I receive an offer, I would be working in the Right Answer division. Upon first glance, I didn’t think much of it. As a younger guy just out of professional school, I needed a job and $15 an hour (+ commission) sounded pretty great when compared to the Knoxville job market. The day following my interview, I received a call from Sales Director. As usual, she was incredibly kind and offered me the position. I couldn’t have been more excited to start work approximately one month later. However, little did I know what I was getting myself into upon accepting the position.

    Cons

    Background re: Training

    Somewhere around the second week in July, I arrived back at AFI’s Knoxville office for a day of orientation and meetings with the Licensing Coordinators. It was here that I basically signed my privacy rights away and granted AFI complete access to my background. As an ethical and honest guy, I don’t have anything to hide! If you do, you should probably stop reading and realize that Answer Financial can, will, and does examine basically every element of your life - personal, financial, and academic. This is incredibly important as most states have extremely high standards for individuals to meet for licensing.

    On the following day, I began AFI’s highly regarded six to eight week training process. Here, under typical circumstances, you sit in a classroom for eight hours a day while a guy that many consider to be one of the most arrogant and egotistical individuals known to man lectures you about insurance. However, my training cohort was largely excluded from AFI’s conventional training method and was placed to study on our own depending upon a widely distributed, externally produced Property and Casualty License Online Course and Manual. To be honest, if it hadn’t been for this divine intervention, I would have likely walked away after a week of dealing with their training manager. Upon completing the online program, my cohort was sent to a external testing center in West Knoxville to take our property and casualty licensing exams. As a lifelong student, I was able to successfully complete and pass both exams within forty-five minutes.

    Following passage, you are then relegated to the training classroom and sales lab environment where you learn about AFI’s proprietary rater systems and the various carriers that you will likely be appointed to write new business with. A word to the wise: If you believe that the training environment does a good job of preparing you for the mess that you are about to encounter when released to the Sales Floor, you are greatly mistaken!

    Background re: Release to the Floor / Sales

    As a Sales Agent, you are expected to meet various metrics (goals). These metrics are often established using monthly, weekly, and daily sales figures, Additionally, you are expected to meet goals set by your individual sales manager. If you are anything like me and are fortunate to be assigned to a particularly arrogant and pushy Sales Manager, you will find that these goals will often change throughout the day! As times, it seems as though her guidance changes as frequently as the wind’s direction. Accordingly, you must be able to adapt to change and to adapt often!

    As an agent in the Right Answer division, you are expected to sale a lackluster product to the less than desired type of customer. In this regard, these are the customers that companies such as Allstate, State Farm, and Liberty Mutual wouldn’t touch with the proverbial ten-foot pole due to their driving histories, criminal charges such as DUI/DWI/Vehicular Homicide/Manslaughter/etc. As you will find, while a few of the companies that you are able to write with are well-known such as Dairyland Auto, you will find that more often than not, your customers have never heard of the companies returning the lowest rate for them. In states like Georgia and South Carolina, you will find that the only rates returning within AFI’s rater are paid-in-full. For customers like those in the Right Answer division, they are living paycheck to paycheck and are unable to afford $4,000 dollars paid-in-full. Additionally, these customers are the type that purchase insurance today for court-required proof of insurance only to call back and cancel it tomorrow once they have resolved whatever mess that they have gotten themselves into. Additionally, you are required to sale a value-added product to the customer. This fee can range significantly depending on your discretion and the customer’s previous purchase history. As most customers know or are quickly finding out from their friends and a simple Google search, this fee is largely arbitrary and can be refunded by AFI’s Policyholder Services division. When this happens, you can kiss any type of a bonus that you might have made goodbye.

    As for leads, you will find that many leads are cold-transfers. This means that the customer will be transferred from one of AFI’s many affinity partners and will often times have no clue that they have been transferred to another company. Often times, the customer will disconnect the call out of frustration or personal time constraints. Please be advised that these leads will count against you in the overall calculation of your sales and productivity rankings.

    A Note re: Benefits

    As an AFI team member, you are eligible for day-one benefits! However, you will soon discover that the health insurance options are high-deductible products and most employees find them incredibly expensive if they have a spouse and/or family on their policies. Additionally, paid time off and personal leave are accumulated fairly quickly. However, be careful not to exercise this leave during training or you may receive a written counseling form (write-up). As you will find out should you exercise this option, a physician’s note will not suffice and this absence will be counted against you. Proceed carefully with this topic as it is very peculiar and largely unenforced for some individuals while excessively enforced for others.

    Conclusion

    Overall, employment with Answer Financial’s Knoxville office is a mixed bag. On one hand, you are able to make $15 an hour for your services - if you can place your sense of independence and morality aside and capitalize on the customer’s downtrodden characteristics. On the other hand, you are working for a company that demands nothing less than your absolute compliance with expectations and standards that are largely ill-conceived and do nothing more than undermine your credibility with the customer.

    Regardless of your decision, I wish for nothing but the best for you! I know how difficult it can be obtaining a job in the Knoxville area and often times, you have to take what you can get. However, Answer Financial is likely one of the most aggravating and dehumanizing environments that I can imagine for anyone looking to launch a career. As you press forward, keep these words in mind: “Turn your failures into lessons, your obstacles into opportunities, your tragedies into triumphs, and in no time you will turn your dreams into reality. - Matshona Dhilwayo”

    Advice to Management

    As discovered during my tenure with Answer Financial, management has largely dismissed the concept of constructive criticism.


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