Insuranceciooutlook

Digital Technology Adoption in Independent Agencies

Pamela Morgan, Insurance CIO Outlook | Thursday, January 01, 1970

Proactively engaging with helpful news or knowledge regularly engages clients and prospects, helps keep the brand at the forefront of their minds, and strengthens the agent's position as a trusted advisor.

Fremont, CA: Independent insurance companies with a well-designed and executed digital strategy have a far higher possibility of success in today's tech-savvy society. However, in 2020 a new focus was put on the need for agencies to digitize, with the COVID-19 pandemic pushing towards a sudden and significant increase in remote work and digital services.

Not all agencies, however, are hitting the spot with their digital approach. Currently, others don't even have a digital strategy at all.

Here are five major insights in independent agencies concerning digital adoption:

Strong Foundational TechnologyTop Insurance Agency Management Solution Companies

Agency management systems enable firms to effectively manage customer relationships, policy and benefits management, sales automation, financial accounting processes, and document management. They are a single, interconnected system that provides a full view of clients and opportunities that every person in an organization can access and act on, regardless of position, time, or place. This helps agencies standardize workflows, seamlessly communicate with insurer partners, and explore potential market opportunities for current and prospective clients.

Standalone CRM/Sales Automation Tools

With very few agencies taking advantage of sales and marketing technologies for automation, the door to opportunity is open. In a world where people are more linked than ever to almost limitless access to information, cutting through the clutter is challenging for businesses. Proactively engaging with helpful news or knowledge regularly engages clients and prospects, helps keep the brand at the forefront of their minds and strengthens the agent's position as a trusted advisor.

Facilitating the Right Technologies

A successful digital strategy would be supported and facilitated by the right technologies. Today, agencies can tap into simple management systems such as cloud, sales, and marketing automation software, self-service portals and mobile apps, data analytics, and more. There is also a wide variety of integrated technology that links brokers, insurers, existing policyholders, and prospects. By building this technology into an effective digital strategy, agencies will produce more productive operations, more informed business decisions, stronger insurer partnerships, enhanced customer support, and increased growth and profitability across all business lines.

Self-Service Portals and Mobile Apps

Online consumer self-service platforms and mobile apps allow consumers the right to initiate policy changes and quote new policies online, access, download, and print policy documents, and pay their bills online without having to go to the office. It provides a single agency-branded platform and mobile app experience for policyholders to interact, improves the agency/customer relationship, and saves money by moving purchases traditionally provided by agency workers to self-service. As a result of these productivity improvements, customer self-service also provides a return on investment in less than one year.

Agency-Insurer Connectivity

Independent brokers and insurers must be locked up at any point of the insurance lifecycle to ensure that policyholders receive the best advice, coverage, and operation. Agency-insurer connectivity increases ease of business over the insurance company's life, thereby saving time and generating more profitable premium opportunities.

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