Deploying for your first storm can be exciting and terrifying all at the same time. It’s not as easy as many would think, and it’s without a doubt, hard work. While your first deployment can certainly be stressful, it is a great experience and one that can change your adjusting career forever. In an effort to prepare you for every curve ball a deployment can throw you, we sat down our lead instructor, Randy Allgood, to provide real life answers to the most common questions we receive about going on your first storm.
On average, how many months are you usually away from home each year on deployment?
It all depends on the size and frequency of the storms and types of storms. Hail season typically runs March –October, however we have seen hail in the South November – February. Hail storms are typically quick, in and out deployments. Something else that you need to take in consideration when referring to deployment and average time away from home is the location of the storm. In most cases, a large hail storm that hits Denver will generate significantly more work than the same size storm that hit Possum Butt, Kentucky. On average, I would say that 3 to 6 weeks is the average hail storm deployment. I was always the hungry , greedy guy that wanted to go early and stay late. I figured out exactly what the company expected, who was the key decision makers and did a great job. I can tell you that your personality gets you hired and keeps you deployed. I have worked on one hail storm for over 9 months when you take into consideration the clean up portion and supplements. Deployment is all about the person, not so much the storm.
What is the biggest challenge adjusters face while on the road for extended periods of time?
This is a very open ended question and in my experience, there are multiple areas that fall into challenges while on the road. Initially, my first thought is financing your trip. You have to remember that unless you are independently wealthy or your spouse is responsible for the bills back home, now you have two sets of monthly expenses. Consider the type of housing you will use while deployed: Hotel, extended stay or are you an RV adjuster? Factor in fuel expenses as well as food. Realistically, an adjuster needs a budget of $150.00 per day while on the road. I have stayed in all three of the aforementioned housing situations, and personally, I prefer the RV. This can be difficult in the Northern states during the winter as many RV parks shut down, issues of a logistic nature are also a consideration when deployed to larger metro areas.
The other key issue is your support system back home. Do you have someone that can handle your business while you’re away? If not, you must pin this down asap. This one issue alone will worry most of us to death while we are away.
What are the pros/cons of husband/wife or partner teams?
Husband /wife or partner teams typically do very well in this business, providing they both have defined roles and perform those roles. When one feels they have to pull the others weight, then it can become a problem. The ability to have someone schedule the appointments, intercept as well as simply listen to the concerns of an insured are paramount in this relationship. If both can write estimates and one is scoping and the other is preparing the estimate , then the skies the limit on financial success. We see many retirees as well as newlyweds hit the road in an RV and see the country while banking some major cash. Make hay while the sun shines.
We hope this provides a little insight on your first deployment. We’d love to hear from you about your first deployment, whether you are eagerly waiting to get called out or you are on deployment now.