Loyal Whitchurch Insurance worker, Joanna White recently celebrated 30 years of service after starting her career in insurance aged just 16.
Joanna, who is currently the Office Manager at the traditional high street broker on Green End, marked this milestone achievement with her colleagues and was treated to a complimentary team meal and drinks.
Her first job!
After leaving Sir John Talbots High School at the age of 15, Joanna spent a year studying on a Government YTS Scheme before successfully securing the position of Office Clerk when the company opened in 1984.
Back then, Whitchurch Insurance was known as Coverwell. In 1992, Coverwell sold its Whitchurch branch to Paul Adams and David Bilbrough and became known as Whitchurch Insurance.
Joanna’s loyalty to the company and ability to build long-lasting relationships with clients meant that she quickly worked her way up to the position of Office Manager within a couple of years.
During her 30 years at Whitchurch Insurance, she has also successfully adapted to many changes in the industry including advances in technology and growing competitor activity which forced many other local brokers to cease trading.
She also witnessed the company change hands again to become part of The County Group in 2012 when Paul and David retired. Since then, the business has remained true to its roots in serving the local community but has benefitted from The County Group’s extensive panel of providers, meaning they could provide the most competitive solutions for their clients and survive the online competition.
Commenting on her anniversary Joanna said: “My 30 years at Whitchurch Insurance have flown by, it’s a great place to work and every day is different. After all this time I still enjoy coming to work, in my job you get to meet new people every day but I also like catching up with some of our oldest clients, especially those that have been with us from the start!
“I can remember opening the office doors in 1984, with no existing clients and getting my first pay packet of £136. Insurance back then was all done with rating guides and a calculator. I was very excited when the company bought its first electronic typewriter and when we had one computer installed for quotations.”
“However, advances in digital technology meant that we were soon faced with competition from well-known insurance giants offering a convenient quote and buy online service.”
“Our business is all about the personal touch and putting the customer first, so it wouldn’t have been right for us to try and imitate this modern day call centre environment. Thankfully, our clients appreciated the fact that they could pop in and see us and discuss their insurance needs with someone that they had built up a relationship with. This coupled with County’s buying power, gave us a competitive advantage and meant that we survived this period whilst many other small brokers didn’t.”
“One thing that has never changed is the amazing support from local businesses and people from our town and it surrounding areas. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all existing clients for their continued support and invite anybody looking for insurance to come in and visit our friendly team.
Dave Clapp, CEO at Whitchurch Insurance and The County Group said: “Joanna is a fantastic employee and has worked incredibly hard over the last 30 years. She’s a well-respected and popular member of the team not only with staff but with some of our long standing clients. I’m sure she’ll be with us for many years to come!”
Whitchurch Insurance provides a complete spectrum of personal and commercial insurance policies. For more information, visit call 01948 665464 or visit our friendly team at 45 Green End (just off the High Street), Whitchurch, SY13 1AD.« Back to all news