How to Automate Your Insurance Agency

This insights piece is by Jason Keck, Founder and CEO at Broker Buddha. It looks at creating a truly digital experience across your broker brand and how the right tech toolkit is essential for growth and customer satisfaction.

Today, insurance agents often have to go to Carrier and Managing General Agent (MGA) portals to get quotes for their clients. Before they can start, they need to collect key information from their clients such as company revenue, payroll, and property values. While the Carriers and
MGAs can leverage in-house or third-party data to minimize the information they need from the agent, they can never completely automate the quoting process because 3rd party systems will never have up-to-date access to proprietary client information necessary for underwriting.

When you think about automation and digital transformation vs. a paper-based process, it’s like comparing central heating vs. an open fire when warming your home. Both work and both require human control, but technology makes the process quicker, easier, and safer. For those
in the insurance industry looking to stay competitive, the question isn’t when to automate but how to take control of the process.

When agencies introduce a digital client experience for information gathering they can leverage the advantages of digital transformation to personalize the experience for their clients and consumers. They can also automate the processing of the information they receive. As an
agency that must work as a partner with clients and wants to continuously increase revenue year over year, having a digital solution that provides an exceptional client experience is vital for standing out amongst the competition. Making sure the user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) are simple and easy to understand is key to digital transformation.

So if you’re ready to upgrade your and your customer’s digital experience, here are top tips and considerations:

1. Personalize the experience

The Insurance Heads of Digital Report 2022 from Intelligent Insider forecasts technology spending to increase by more than 25% by 2026. Spending will primarily be on developing desirable self-service tools, recommending products, and personalizing experiences for customers. When operating digitally, insurance providers must look to retain the excellent customer service the industry is known for offline.

The personalization of services with technology has been widespread across industries, from grocery shopping to banking, as they undergo digital transformation. Without personalized service, 76% of customers now say they become frustrated by their experience. Taking control
of digital transformation also means unlocking the potential of automation so busy agents can get the tools they need to provide the level of service they desire.

2. Simplify the process

Understanding what’s being asked on a paper application can be complicated for insurance applicants. Such system inefficiencies make the renewal process difficult. By upgrading applications to a digital experience, agents have an opportunity to make things simpler using
basic features like required questions, conditional logic and tooltips.

Automated tools allow insurance companies to create personalized forms for tailored services and advice, making people feel catered to. The main benefit of being able to design your own path to automation is that you have full control over your customer journeys. Automated pre-fills
using customers’ previous information and documentation saves time and personalizes the experience.

3. Reduce friction

Poor claims procedures put agents at risk: frustrated customers can choose to switch carriers. In the next five years, an estimated $170 billion in premiums is at risk due to customer churn from unsatisfactory claims processes. Making the customer experience as frictionless as possible helps protect against this potential loss. In the digital age, using customizable automation platforms to update your UI and UX is a fast way to improve your customer’s experience. Smart forms are one way agents can guide customers through their insurance applications at their own pace, without any stressful back-and-forth. Likewise, using conditional logic inputs that automatically show users the correct next question depending on their previous answer, reduces as much confusion as possible.

4. Faster verification

With automation in place, data capture is put back onto the consumer, reducing the amount of time and resources agents use to collect customer information, and reducing human error from translating information from one system to another. Automated smart forms also use digital signatures to quickly finalize applications so information can be instantly added to records rather than getting lost in email exchanges.

Rather than provide the same information yearly when it comes time to renew, automatic record-keeping and pre-fill abilities create superior quality services for customers and boost an agency’s profile. With friction removed from the process, agents can spend less time verifying information and more time interacting with customers, following up on their quotes, and delivering a quality experience.

The Key to Success: Beyond White-Labeling

A product or service is white labeled when a company employs another company to use one of their products or services but they launch it under their own brand name. For example, a company might use accounting software that they didn’t develop but looks like part of their company because their logo and branding are all over it. With a white-label solution, companies can innovate faster and avoid the costs, time, and energy involved in developing their own branded accounting software while maintaining the look that the software was developed in-house.

The trouble with white labeling, however, is control. With a purely white-labeled product, you can’t often configure the user experience beyond colors and logos. The best white-labeled products give you more control. Nearly 90% of customers report being willing to pay a premium
for a brand they trust, so having control over the user experience as well as your agency’s visual identity helps build loyalty and trust.

For companies looking to take control of their digital transformation and preserve their brand identity, customizable, white-labeled automation platforms are easing these pain points. And when agencies make the move to owning their own digital customer journey, opportunities to build trust and expand your business blossom.

Designing your own automation through a configurable platform in collaboration with a technology partner is how agencies can take control of their digital transformation and advance it faster. Companies need to focus on using digital tools with automating capabilities that will
provide a seamless experience for the end user, using a branded experience the customer recognizes and trusts. Only then can they avoid the type of frustration with digital applications that increases customer churn and damages reputations.

About alastair walker 12127 Articles
20 years experience as a journalist and magazine editor. I'm your contact for press releases, events, news and commercial opportunities at Insurance-Edge.Net

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