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Great submission software cuts down the time it takes to handle everything from data entry, quote generation, and even automated cross-selling capabilities. For wholesalers, it frees up your agents to spend more time on sales rather than administrative tasks. For agents, it’s a welcome relief from the monotony of data entry. Most importantly, it offers a competitive advantage in terms of speed and convenience for prospects.
Application submission software can also make or break your ability to close a sale, keep clients happy during renewals, and even retain top talent. McKinsey noted that small and medium businesses have discovered that they’re underinsured since the beginning of COVID, opening the opportunity for agencies and brokerages to provide assistance and get small businesses the coverage they need.
In this article, we will discuss the features and tools you should be looking for when considering and onboarding submission software technology.
Submission Software Features
Choosing the right software takes time. Evaluating the varying features can be a frustrating and dizzying experience. Let’s take a look at the must-have features of superior commercial insurance submission software so you can get ahead of the competition.
#1 Smart Forms
Quotes for almost anything can be delivered on demand in many industries. Commercial lines are catching up, thankfully. Much of that new speed is thanks to smart forms.
Instead of entering prospect data into several different software applications just to run quotes, submission software can leverage behind-the-scenes technology like Google, to help pull in public information for your clients. Alleviating tedious manual entry and ensuring the data is accurate.
This leads to one of the best features for quoting convenience…
#2 Single Entry Submission Point
A single-entry submission point is a feature of submission software that provides one application that in turn submits it to multiple carriers simultaneously. While the obvious advantage here is the speed of quoting and reduced tedium of data entry over multiple carriers’ quoting software, it has other perks too.
One challenge agencies and brokers face in commercial insurance is comparing apples to apples between policies. For example, one carrier might have lower rates but assume less risk through its contract wording. A single-entry submission puts all of the options side-by-side, making choices clearer for clients.
Your agents can continue to use the data to run new quotes for renewals or cross-sell varying lines of business.
#3 Convenient Automation
While it’s one thing to return quotes quickly to a client, setting up the automation for bindable quotes adds an extra layer of convenience. Clients can choose the plan that best fits their needs and immediately get the ball rolling on the next step, no matter what time it is.
Reducing effort for agents and clients alike through automated processes like bindable quotes makes your agency stand out in terms of customer service. Automation can grease the line between prospective clients and customers by making the next steps immediate and guiding clients through the process with minimal effort on their part.
#4 Cross-Sell Lines of Business
In addition to automation that promotes convenience, cross-selling automation can build up your book of business with reduced time spent on outreach on the part of your agents. Machine learning and insurance AI can find out what types of clients tend to purchase multiple lines of insurance.
Then, based on the likelihood of sales and business necessity, the cross-sell automation can use the information from the initial quote or policy to recommend additional coverage for other risks that may arise.
It helps your business and helps the client prevent coverage gaps that may cost their business time, money, and reputation.
#5 Rapid Renewal Tools
Renewals can create challenges for some agents. Changes in management for their clients might mean that a company that wanted the best price may now want the best coverage, or vice versa.
Rapid renewal software can take those challenges off your hands by quoting all of your monthly renewals in one easy step.
Your agents won’t have to work so hard on renewals, and they’ll always have quotes at the ready for any changes a client may want to make to their policy as their business grows and pivots.
Easier renewals leave more time to generate new business and increase revenue.
#6 Support & Onboarding Assistance
Learning new software can be tricky, more so in a fast-paced business environment like commercial insurance.
Whether the software includes on-demand training videos, help pages, or a 24-hour helpdesk, customer support in a new product right off the bat tells you that if something goes awry, later on, the software company’s support team will be there when you need them.
Assistance with onboarding staff to a new system shows an extra level of dedication to users. It means the software company is investing in its long-term client dedication.
#7 User-Centric Design
Support tools can be wonderfully helpful but cannot replace great user-centric design.
The best software has a minimal learning curve. Both the newest assistant, fresh out of school, and the veteran agent who prefers the days of the fax machine should be able to find the tools within the program they need to use without an instruction manual.
Ideally, the learning curve should be slight, and the software steps match the same logic as the insurance processes that it assists.
On the other end of excellent user experience (UX,) the best software has almost no bloat.
Bloat happens when software companies think they understand the workflow processes better than their clients. The software ends up with tons of extra features that most businesses never use, making the user interface more confusing than necessary, and occasionally the software runs glacially slow.
#8 Sensible Reporting
It’s a tragedy when software has fantastic main features and leaves the reporting as an afterthought.
It’s a waste of time when the software manages to produce numbers, and someone has to put in the labor to turn raw numbers into a simple, clear report that only takes a glance to understand.
The best application submission software for commercial insurance can save time and energy in every part of the sales funnel, from quoting to key performance indicators. Valuable reporting shows everyone from management to customer-facing staff what works and what needs more attention.
#9 Modern CyberSecurity
With one of the new booming lines of insurance covering cyber threats and data theft, one would hope that insurance software carries some of the most robust protections against ever-evolving cybercrime.
Data encryption and protection protocols are the bare minimum, particularly with quoting software, where information will be passed online from the submission software to various carriers.
Asking about software security when looking into implementing application submission software for your business can help you narrow down which companies take your security as seriously as you take your client’s information security.
Custom Software Options
Finding the perfect software for your team is similar to shopping for the perfect house. It may exist, but you might have to compromise on a few nice-to-have features to get all of the need-to-have features.
An alternative is having custom software developed for your unique business needs. Sometimes custom software can be as straightforward as adjustments to the current out-of-the-box product. Nowadays, unique bespoke software takes minimal time to build and gives companies the chance to have a software package that fits their core competencies.
With the rapid advancements in machine learning and automation software, your ideal features could be a reality only weeks later.
Click the button below to read more about available software options or explore your options for a custom solution with a complimentary, no-obligation call.