Chris Ray in his article "Cleaning up the claims process" (Features, 20 April) uses a broad brush to paint a negative picture of the most important function of any insurance organisation.

Insurance is, after all, nothing but a promise to pay. I completely agree that treating customers fairly should underpin any claims function.

That said, to read another article rebuking claims professionals by suggesting that claims are badly handled in the interest of saving money does a disservice to the excellent work being undertaken by most claims professionals everywhere. To suggest that technology and attention to balance sheets dictate the negative way in which claims are handled is misguided.

Cost control is essential, but not however at the expense of quality, and don't forget cost control benefits policyholders by way of premium control. Technological advancement is another prerequisite to excellent service - instantaneous communication, for example, makes claims handling much more efficient for the people who matter: policyholders.

With the FSA's attention turned to treating customers fairly, I hope the questionable practices highlighted will soon be eradicated and in turn the positive work that is continually overlooked will deservedly come to the fore. Perhaps when this happens we will see an increase in the numbers of people looking to work in claims.

At Hiscox, we exist in direct contrast to the "grimy" world that Mr Ray describes. We pride ourselves in placing the customer at the forefront of everything we do as demonstrated by some of the core values of our philosophy - courage, rigour, integrity, execution and empathy. Our loss adjusters are known to us on an individual level and remunerated fairly; our staff are committed to professional excellence - all so we can ensure that our customers are receiving exceptional service.

I'm proud to be able to say that 97% of our clients tell us they're happy with our claims service - but even more proud to tell you that everyone at Hiscox as equally concerned with converting the remaining 3%.

The majority of claims professionals are committed to helping customers at the time they need it most...sometimes there are blips and bad decisions, but these are far outweighed by the good - so let's try to communicate this message.

Peter McLoughlin
Property claims manager
Hiscox Insurance Company