Today’s Insurance Agency

Today’s insurance agency: More flexible, connected & profitable

Today’s insurance agency are reaping the benefits of a hybrid-work environment.

Recruiting & retaining young talent will improve as insurance meets the flexibility & tech-enabled workplace that younger generations expect.

 

Today's Insurance Agency

 

Many independent agencies have been financially successful with their existing InsureTech & giving them little incentive to make changes or invest in new tools.

Our industry has been very comfortable for a really long time with an “if it ain’t broke & we don’t need to fix it” approach.

That changed in 2020. Many agencies had to abruptly pivot to remote business & implement new digital solutions practically overnight just to function.

Technologies like web & cloud enabled agency management solutions, mobile apps & electronic payments & signatures became table stakes to service clients.

The silver lining to this sudden change & is that as agencies have experienced the benefits of this change.

Their appetite & enthusiasm for adopting a more modern insurance experience for both agents & the end-insured — has grown.

Agencies are firmly out of their traditional comfort zone in a very positive way.

There’s more openness to change & more curiosity even excitement about how emerging solutions can help agencies not only survive today but thrive in the future.

 

Today's Insurance Agency

 

Flexible working environments

This time last year & it would have been difficult to find many independent insurance agencies that were embracing remote work on a consistent basis.

Vertafore survey of more than 1,000 agency employees & 7 out of 10 respondents reported transitioning to at least some form of working from home.

COVID-19 a full 45% reported working from home at least 80% of the time & what surprised many was that working from home actually went well.

Employees quickly learned to juggle work and family life & proved their resilience.

Agencies continued to service their clients’ needs. As a result & recent opinion piece from the New York Times, “the infeasibility of remote work has been permanently undercut.”

Working from home is not only feasible but also profitable & in 2021 the insurance industry will continue to see shifting expectations for what can & cannot be done in the office.

Vertafore asked insurance professionals about their ideal breakdown between working from home and going into the office.

In 2021, we’re going to see smart agencies reap the benefits of embracing a hybrid work environment.

Recruiting & retaining young talent will improve as insurance meets the flexibility & tech-enabled workplace that younger generations expect.

These factors are essential as the insurance industry at large faces a “silver tsunami” in which much of the workforce.

Nearing retirement & low numbers of college graduates are looking at insurance as a profession.

Experimenting with new InsureTech

Agencies continue to move away from in-house solutions to web & cloud enabled agency management systems.

Ensure employees have the most up-to-date versions and can access new automation & efficiency features as they are introduced.

Modern systems more readily integrate with new solutions & allowing agencies to stay on the cutting edge of InsureTech to modernize & grow their business.

That includes solutions that use machine learning & artificial intelligence & integrated analytics to improve processes and identify new business opportunities.

InsureTech providers have delivered tools that can proactively predict which clients are at the highest risk of leaving.

Sift through vast pools of data to create coverage recommendations & automate personalized client communications, and more.

These tools may not be quite a George Jetson version of the future & they are harnessing some pretty advanced technology to make independent agencies of all sizes faster, smarter, and more nimble.

Agencies are more willing to break out of their technology comfort zone.

We’re going to see wider trials and adoption of these cutting-edge solutions  not just by large organizations but also by small & midsized agencies.

 

Today's Insurance Agency

 

Improved client experience

The shutdowns of 2020 meant that people all over the world accelerated their expectations for digital & 24/7 tools for nearly every aspect of daily life.

Juggling work & homeschooling &work hours became inconsistent & demand for online options for everyday activities everything from grocery shopping to doctors’ appointments.

Things that were a “nice-to-have” in 2019  e-signatures & finding information after hours & conducting business online  became essential in 2020.

The insurance industry wasn’t immune to this demand from consumers & Others quickly added solutions & dealt with frustrated clients.

Digital client experience seamlessly met the need while also being a trusted advisor in a time of great upheaval & uncertainty.

We’ll see wider adoption of technologies that make it easier for clients to do business with independent agents.

Online document retrieval & instant quotes for both personal & commercial lines & e-signatures & customer portals.

Today’s Insurance Agencies are coming to grips with the fact that consumer expectations have permanently shifted.

Today’s insurance agencies that had a client digital experience in place realized that it allowed them to spend less time on.

Transactional processes and more time building deeper client relationships and giving professional advice to their clients.

The digital experience hasn’t killed the client phone call (or in-person meeting).

Personal touchpoints to what they should be meaningful conversations versus rote business & who isn’t for that as a permanent change.

 

There’s no going back

insurance industry wasn’t broken and didn’t need to be fixed prior to the pandemic & it was a little bit bent.

We were behind the trends of the modern world. For better or worse & the pandemic forced our hand in 2020.

The most nimble and forward-looking agencies have learned this lesson & found the silver lining of what 2020 brought us.

2021 is all about furthering the momentum of this digital transformation because clients & employees have gotten a taste of what’s possible & they aren’t willing to go back.

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