ROSEVILLE – Verus Insurance Services, LLC has officially opened for business, announced Scott Kelley, President of Verus. With a core set of employees and values, Verus will “shake up this industry” with a new way of doing business.
Kelley has been known in the industry for many years. As a principal of Kelley & Swain he and his partners built the firm into one of the largest and most respected employee benefits brokerages in Northern CA before selling the brokerage in 2008.
Verus is a full-service brokerage firm assisting employers with their core and voluntary employee benefits programs including compliance, technology solutions and plan management.
“We’re very excited to showcase our unique approach,” says Kelley. “We are working hard to be a part of the solution for our clients, and it’s already working.”
“I wouldn’t think of anyone other than Verus to handle our insurance needs,” says Debbie Abrao, AVP of Payroll/Benefits with Westamerica Bancorporation. “Their attention to providing exceptional customer service while implementing a new approach to benefits enrollment is a breath of fresh air in this industry.”
Insurance industry profits reached a record 21% in 2014 according to Reagan Consulting. Many brokers are reporting 30 to 35% profits.
Kelley explains that in the drive for brokerage firms to become bigger and more lucrative, many firms have ended up charging higher fees or commissions and burning out their employees. They are also limiting the number of vendors they are willing to work with. That leads to poor service and less choice for clients.
“We’re touching on something that resonates with people,” Kelley says, “and they know we’re focused on the right things; our people, our clients, and our vendors. The high turnover experienced by brokerage firms is easily traced back to the drive for higher returns, and clients really suffer. We don’t have that focus here, our employees come first. We are making work-life balance real and tangible. If we need to hire a housekeeper to help ease the stress on our staff during the busy part of the year, then that’s what we’re going to do.”
“Like our company, our brokers will remain independent,” Kelley continues, “We don’t want to fight over people’s relationships, so brokers can leave at any time and the business they brought is theirs to take with them. That is unheard of in this industry.”
Due to Health Care Reform, the industry has become very complex, complicated by uncertainty and volatile markets. Verus has the experience and capabilities to help organizations wade through the complexities of mandates, regulations, taxes and options, to find what is best for their employees and their long-term growth and stability.
Kelley notes, “Our approach will allow our staff to focus on what they do best, consultation. Our most distinctive characteristics are the quality of our people,” says Kelley, “and the principled nature of our culture. We’re experienced and determined to serve our clients with customized advice and with top-rated client services. Unlike so many others, squeezing more profits out of each vendor and every customer, we’ll live on 10%. Period. If we negotiate a better price with a vendor, we won’t pocket that, rather it will be passed right along to our client. That’s a refreshing change in this industry.”
Verus, a Latin word meaning “truth”, struck a chord with Kelley and his team: “The name reflects our commitment to values like integrity, independence, transparency and trust,” says Kelley. Verus was a well-known Gladiator in the 1st Century who famously came to a draw with another fighter, both participants winning their freedom. “Here in the 21st Century,” Kelley says, “Verus will be fighting for our customers and for our employees. We can all be winners.”