Morses Club Agent - Rory
How long have you been an Agent?
25 years plus.
How many hours a week do you work on average?
I would say I work 25 to 30 hours a week now taking everything into consideration. This is now my only job. I've always worked full time and had this as a part time job but I got made redundant from my full time job 6 years ago so my Business Manager put two customer books together for me and now I work it as a full time role.
How many customers do you have?
I have 206 customers which is a lot and I cover quite a big area, hence why it's a full time role for me.
What did you do before you became an Agent?
I've always worked full time driving but I've also worked for United and Friendly which is an Insurance company and for Compass Credit doing a similar sort of job to what I do now years ago. I've been a recovery agent as well so used to go and pick people up when they broke down on the motorways; I've always been used to dealing with people in all sorts of different situations.
What was it about the Agent role that attracted you?
I initially looked at it because I'd done a similar thing for a different company previously. The kids were younger and I needed some extra money and knew they were looking for Agents so I thought "why not" and applied, and here I am 25 years later.
What does an 'average' day look like for you?
There isn't really an average day - every day is different. I make a list each day of the customers that I'm visiting and I have a list of 'back calls' to make too which is when people aren't in so you drop by again another time. If I can't catch them on the usual day I make sure I add them to the next day's visits - you've got to be organised and get this sort of thing sorted before you go out. I usually go out at school time - about mid-afternoon - which I've found is a fantastic time to go out. You can make some visits to people you know will be in like OAPs for example, and then visit the parents who have just picked their kids up from school and then you can drop in and visit people who have just got home from work. That's the way I do it and it works out for me and my customers so everyone's happy. You get to know the best way to do things as you work your book longer and I was lucky that I could also bring knowledge on this kind of thing from a previous role.
What is your favourite thing about being an Agent?
For me it's meeting people and interacting with them. You're not really just there to make collections and lend money you're there to help people and they will ask your advice about things. Because I've worked as an Agent a long time and had the same rounds I'm now even visiting kids of parents I collected from years ago who are adults now - you see people grow up! I've got a big book so I often see people I know when I'm out and about and it's nice when they want to say hi.
What are the biggest challenges you face in the role?
Meeting targets can be challenging sometimes. I have a good set of customers and collect very well but meeting targets can be tricky depending on the time of year as well as what my customers want or need at any given time. You get to know the times of year which will be more challenging as you do the job longer.
What are the qualities you think people need to succeed as an Agent?
You need to be organised - that's a must! You need to be good at mixing with people and talking to all different kinds of people as your customers can come from very different backgrounds and live very different lives to each other. You also need to be presentable and look smart. I'm not saying you need to wear a shirt and tie as I've found that often alienates you from your customers, but you can't look scruffy. At the end of the day you're working on behalf of a business and if you don't look right then it might make the customer think twice about whether they want to be using the company at all.