Competencies of Sales Employees as a Determinant of the Quality of Provided Services Based on the Insurance Market
Purpose: The main goal of the research presented in this paper was to assess the factors determining the quality of services provided by an insurance agent with particular emphasis on the importance of an employee’s competencies. Design/Methodology/Approach: To this end, the Servqual method was employed to survey the clients of insurance agents. This method evaluates the quality of the experienced service and that of the expected service and identifies discrepancies in the customers’ expectations. The customers assessed five dimensions (tangibles, reliability, responsiveness to the customer’s expectations, assurance, and empathy), to which 22 factors have been assigned. Findings: The survey results proved the assurance and tangibles to be the most and the least essential dimensions. The factors that were of vital importance to the customers included building trust by a sales employee and a high level of his/her knowledge and flawless documentation. The most significant gap between the actual and the expected quality was noticed for the following factors: ensuring the best satisfaction of customer needs and providing services effectively and on time. Practical Implications: The conducted research has confirmed that the quality of provided services requires constant monitoring, verifying the market situation, and improving employees’ competencies in the sustainable development of the economy. The insurance awareness of a Polish customer increases; therefore, agents should improve their skills to meet customers’ requirements, striving to ensure their satisfaction. Originality/Value: The paper adds to the discussion on the competencies of sales employees as a determinant of the quality of provided services based on the insurance market. It broadens knowledge on the relationship between competencies of sales employees and quality of services.