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Re: Vasquez-Morrell Assurance specializes in insuring manufacturers. Whene [#permalink]
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Re: Vasquez-Morrell Assurance specializes in insuring manufacturers. Whene [#permalink]
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P1 : Vasquez-Morrell Assurance specializes in insuring manufacturers.
P2 : Whenever a policyholder makes a claim, a claims adjuster determines the amount that Vasquez-Morrell is obligated to pay.
P3 : Vasquez-Morrell is cutting its staff of claims adjusters by 15 percent.
Goal : To ensure that the company’s ability to handle claims promptly is affected as little as possible by the staff cuts,
Method to achieve the goal : consultants recommend that Vasquez-Morrell lay off those adjusters who now take longest, on average, to complete work on claims assigned to them.

Assumption: method to achieve the goal will not have other bad impact on the goal.

To find the 'statement which most seriously calls into question the consultants’ criterion for selecting the staff to be laid off', we need to hit out assumption. So, we need to show that if there is longer time taking staffs are laid off, it will impact the ability to handle claims promptly.

(A) If the time that Vasquez-Morrell takes to settle claims increases significantly, it could lose business to other insurers.
>> It is strengthener

(B) Supervisors at Vasquez-Morrell tend to assign the most complex claims to the most capable adjusters.
>> Yeah, if complex claims handlers (and hence longer time taker) are laid off, the time taken to handle those claims would increase further than would decrease. hence, it is a weakener.

(C) At Vasquez-Morrell, no insurance payments are made until a claims adjuster has reached a final determination on the claim.
>> nonsensical

(D) There are no positions at Vasquez-Morrell to which staff currently employed as claims adjusters could be reassigned.
>> there is scarcity of jobs there. laid off employee will not be given work. But how does that matters.

(E) The premiums that Vasquez-Morrell currently charges are no higher than those charged for similar coverage by competitors.
>> nonsensical
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Re: Vasquez-Morrell Assurance specializes in insuring manufacturers. Whene [#permalink]
Vasquez-Morrell Assurance specializes in insuring manufacturers. Whenever a policyholder makes a claim, a claims adjuster determines the amount that Vasquez-Morrell is obligated to pay. Vasquez-Morrell is cutting its staff of claims adjusters by 15 percent. To ensure that the company’s ability to handle claims promptly is affected as little as possible by the staff cuts, consultants recommend that Vasquez-Morrell lay off those adjusters who now take longest, on average, to complete work on claims assigned to them.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously calls into question the consultants’ criterion for selecting the staff to be laid off?


(A) If the time that Vasquez-Morrell takes to settle claims increases significantly, it could lose business to other insurers.

Strengthener. Out.

(B) Supervisors at Vasquez-Morrell tend to assign the most complex claims to the most capable adjusters.

Correct. One could falsely believe that those who take the longest are incapable. But, in actuality this choice says those guys are the best at handling complex claims. With these adjusters gone, there will be no one left to handle such claims and that would certainly affect the company’s ability to handle claims properly.

(C) At Vasquez-Morrell, no insurance payments are made until a claims adjuster has reached a final determination on the claim.

Extra supplemental information. Out.

(D) There are no positions at Vasquez-Morrell to which staff currently employed as claims adjusters could be reassigned.

Irrelevant. We need to attack the criterion. The argument could still hold even if these guys could not be reassigned.

(E) The premiums that Vasquez-Morrell currently charges are no higher than those charged for similar coverage by competitors.

Irrelevant.
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Re: Vasquez-Morrell Assurance specializes in insuring manufacturers. Whene [#permalink]
GMATNinja wrote:
So here's what we're being asked for:

Quote:
Which of the following, if true, most seriously calls into question the consultants’ criterion for selecting the staff to be laid off?


And this is the consultants’ criterion for selecting the staff to be laid off:

Quote:
...consultants recommend that Vasquez-Morrell lay off those adjusters who now take longest, on average, to complete work on claims assigned to them.


And as kumarashok29 mentioned, here's the company's goal, in the exact words of the passage:

Quote:
To ensure that the company’s ability to handle claims promptly is affected as little as possible by the staff cuts...


Kumarashok29's answer is pretty thorough here -- but let's talk a little bit more about B.

Suppose that B is true, and "supervisors at Vasquez-Morrell tend to assign the most complex claims to the most capable adjusters." If so, then the company's best adjusters might also be among the slowest, since they're assigned the most complex claims. And "the most capable adjusters" are exactly the ones that you don't want to lay off. If the company lays off the best adjusters, it follows that their goal ("handle claims promptly") will be undermined.

I hope this helps!


Hi GMATNinja, I think that although B might be "the best answer" it's barely logically connected to the premises

In order for B to be a strong answer you would totally have to assume that the most capable claim adjusters working the most complex cases take on average more time to solve their cases than their less capable peers working less complex cases, and I don't think this is logically sounded.

I think the most complex cases could not only be solved in roughly the same average time than the rest of the cases, but even in less time since they are handled by the most capable employees. I say this not only out of intuition but from professional experience, since most capable employees tend to be so much productive that their less experienced or capable peers.

Therefore I find the "correct answer" VERY unappealing, do you think I'm missing something here?
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Re: Vasquez-Morrell Assurance specializes in insuring manufacturers. Whene [#permalink]
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giovannisumano wrote:
GMATNinja wrote:
So here's what we're being asked for:

Quote:
Which of the following, if true, most seriously calls into question the consultants’ criterion for selecting the staff to be laid off?


And this is the consultants’ criterion for selecting the staff to be laid off:

Quote:
...consultants recommend that Vasquez-Morrell lay off those adjusters who now take longest, on average, to complete work on claims assigned to them.


And as kumarashok29 mentioned, here's the company's goal, in the exact words of the passage:

Quote:
To ensure that the company’s ability to handle claims promptly is affected as little as possible by the staff cuts...


Kumarashok29's answer is pretty thorough here -- but let's talk a little bit more about B.

Suppose that B is true, and "supervisors at Vasquez-Morrell tend to assign the most complex claims to the most capable adjusters." If so, then the company's best adjusters might also be among the slowest, since they're assigned the most complex claims. And "the most capable adjusters" are exactly the ones that you don't want to lay off. If the company lays off the best adjusters, it follows that their goal ("handle claims promptly") will be undermined.

I hope this helps!


Hi GMATNinja, I think that although B might be "the best answer" it's barely logically connected to the premises

In order for B to be a strong answer you would totally have to assume that the most capable claim adjusters working the most complex cases take on average more time to solve their cases than their less capable peers working less complex cases, and I don't think this is logically sounded.


I think the most complex cases could not only be solved in roughly the same average time than the rest of the cases, but even in less time since they are handled by the most capable employees. I say this not only out of intuition but from professional experience, since most capable employees tend to be so much productive that their less experienced or capable peers.

Therefore I find the "correct answer" VERY unappealing, do you think I'm missing something here?


You are not wrong. I remember GmatNinja's words. I remember he repeated many times in his posts that we need to find an option among given 5 because the question asked is MOST.
Which of the following, if true, most seriously calls into question the consultants’ criterion for selecting the staff to be laid off?

In this question, whatever theory we apply, the fact is that there is no other option except B even that close. B not be a best answer , but it is right answer given to the question , among available 5 options.

:)
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Re: Vasquez-Morrell Assurance specializes in insuring manufacturers. Whene [#permalink]
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giovannisumano wrote:
GMATNinja wrote:
So here's what we're being asked for:

Quote:
Which of the following, if true, most seriously calls into question the consultants’ criterion for selecting the staff to be laid off?


And this is the consultants’ criterion for selecting the staff to be laid off:

Quote:
...consultants recommend that Vasquez-Morrell lay off those adjusters who now take longest, on average, to complete work on claims assigned to them.


And as kumarashok29 mentioned, here's the company's goal, in the exact words of the passage:

Quote:
To ensure that the company’s ability to handle claims promptly is affected as little as possible by the staff cuts...


Kumarashok29's answer is pretty thorough here -- but let's talk a little bit more about B.

Suppose that B is true, and "supervisors at Vasquez-Morrell tend to assign the most complex claims to the most capable adjusters." If so, then the company's best adjusters might also be among the slowest, since they're assigned the most complex claims. And "the most capable adjusters" are exactly the ones that you don't want to lay off. If the company lays off the best adjusters, it follows that their goal ("handle claims promptly") will be undermined.

I hope this helps!


Hi GMATNinja, I think that although B might be "the best answer" it's barely logically connected to the premises

In order for B to be a strong answer you would totally have to assume that the most capable claim adjusters working the most complex cases take on average more time to solve their cases than their less capable peers working less complex cases, and I don't think this is logically sounded.

I think the most complex cases could not only be solved in roughly the same average time than the rest of the cases, but even in less time since they are handled by the most capable employees. I say this not only out of intuition but from professional experience, since most capable employees tend to be so much productive that their less experienced or capable peers.

Therefore I find the "correct answer" VERY unappealing, do you think I'm missing something here?

It’s important to keep in mind that the question merely asks for an answer choice that seriously calls into question the consultants’ criterion. This means that we don’t necessarily need an answer choice that would devastate the criterion or prove the criterion wrong. Rather, we just need an answer choice that gives us reason to QUESTION the consultants’ criterion.

The consultants seem to believe that the adjusters who take the longest are the least competent when it comes to the ability to handle claims promptly. This would likely be true if claims are randomly assigned.

But (B) tells us that the most complex claims are assigned to the most capable adjusters. It’s possible that, as you suggest, the most capable adjusters still handle these claims quickly. But it’s also possible that the level of complexity requires additional work and additional time. We don’t know, and we can’t assume either.

So maybe we can’t say that (B) devastates the consultants’ criterion. But because (B) introduces the possibility that the speed at which claims are handled is not indicative of the competence of adjusters, it gives us plenty of reason to QUESTION the consultants’ criterion. For that reason, (B) is the best answer choice.

I hope that helps!
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Re: Vasquez-Morrell Assurance specializes in insuring manufacturers. Whene [#permalink]
When I do this question, I eliminated B because I thought it says that the insurance company assigned complex tasks to all of its adjusters, so each of the adjuster has the same difficulty-level jobs and the more efficient ones are the better ones; And I choose E because I think due to the higher prices of the insurance offered by the company compared to its competitor, it takes more time for customer to ponder whether to sign a contract so it's not the adjuster's fault, it's the company's fault.
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Re: Vasquez-Morrell Assurance specializes in insuring manufacturers. Whene [#permalink]
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yuxiangdreamMBA wrote:
When I do this question, I eliminated B because I thought it says that the insurance company assigned complex tasks to all of its adjusters, so each of the adjuster has the same difficulty-level jobs and the more efficient ones are the better ones; And I choose E because I think due to the higher prices of the insurance offered by the company compared to its competitor, it takes more time for customer to ponder whether to sign a contract so it's not the adjuster's fault, it's the company's fault.

Let's start by considering answer choice (B):

Quote:
Which of the following, if true, most seriously calls into question the consultants’ criterion for selecting the staff to be laid off?

(B) Supervisors at Vasquez-Morrell tend to assign the most complex claims to the most capable adjusters.

As you suggest, the question of which employees tend to receive the most complex claims is key to analyzing (B). Notice that the passage itself doesn't tell us anything about who receives the most complex claims. Given that fact, how does (B) affect the criterion for "selecting the staff to be laid off?"

Well, if the most capable staff tend to get the most complex claims, they may take longer to complete their cases than other adjusters. And if that's the case, laying off adjusters who take the longest to complete their claims would selectively get rid of the most capable employees. Since the goal of the criterion is to "ensure that the company’s ability to handle claims promptly is affected as little as possible," laying off the most capable adjusters would be a bad idea.

So because (B) calls the "criterion for selecting the staff to be laid off" into question, it's correct.

Let's now consider (E):

Quote:
(E) The premiums that Vasquez-Morrell currently charges are no higher than those charged for similar coverage by competitors.

Notice (E) is telling us that Vasquez-Morrell's charges are NO higher -- meaning their premiums are either the same or lower those of other companies. How would this affect the "criterion for selecting the staff to be laid off?"

Keep in mind we're looking for a reason to call into question the criterion of laying off employees who take the longest to complete their claims. In other words, we're trying to see why the average length of time per claim isn't a good way to measure performance.

From that angle, it's hard to see why the cost of the premiums would matter. Since all the employees would be working with the same premiums, it shouldn't affect some more than others, so it doesn't really call into question the criterion for deciding who to lay off. For that reason, we can eliminate (E).

I hope that helps!
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Re: Vasquez-Morrell Assurance specializes in insuring manufacturers. Whene [#permalink]
It is again a confusing question.

Answer B assumes that the complex claims take longer time. But the nature of claim may not always be linked to time it takes. May be the slowest adjusters taking longest time even for simple claims.

Additional assumption is required to answer the question.

bit confused.
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Re: Vasquez-Morrell Assurance specializes in insuring manufacturers. Whene [#permalink]
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AvijitDey wrote:
It is again a confusing question.

Answer B assumes that the complex claims take longer time. But the nature of claim may not always be linked to time it takes. May be the slowest adjusters taking longest time even for simple claims.

Additional assumption is required to answer the question.

bit confused.

Think about it this way: if you're trying to decide whether it's smart to lay off the adjusters who take the longest, you're trying to figure out why this group is taking longer than the others.

    Scenario 1: They're just slow workers. Okay, now it makes sense to lay them off.

    Scenario 2: They have the hardest cases. Now, it wouldn't make sense to lay them off. The hard cases will likely be time consuming for anyone.

Is it theoretically possible that harder cases don't take longer? Sure. Anything's possible. Maybe brilliant workers are knocking out those complicated cases quickly and the not-so-great workers are taking forever on easier ones. But logically, wouldn't it make sense to conclude that complex cases, on average, take longer than simple ones?

(B) is essentially telling us that scenario 2 is more likely. Worse, if the complex cases take the longest, and those cases are assigned to the best workers, then by firing the folks who take the longest, the company might lose its best workers.

Ironclad? No. You're right about that. But it doesn't have to be ironclad. It just has to call the consultants' recommendation into question, and it certainly does that well enough to hang on to the option.

None of the other answer choices do much of anything to make us doubt the consultants' recommendation, so (B) is our answer.

The takeaway: you're not looking for an answer that is absolutely bulletproof! You're looking for the best of the bunch. So anytime an answer is good, but potentially flawed, keep it around. If you can't find anything better, well, the flawed one is your answer.

I hope that helps!
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