Weighing risks is at the core of the insurance industry. Meticulous attention is given to poring over data and calculating just how much risk is involved with any given activity. So, it makes sense that an insurance agency would also weigh its options before deciding on which agency management system to employ.
When deciding on the perfect management software for your agency, there are a few key elements to pay special attention to. You want to ensure you are getting software that is user-friendly enough to be picked up easily by agents, but also robust enough to provide everything your agency needs to serve your clients.
Here are the four main elements to pay attention to after cost:
Appropriateness for your agency
Before you can figure out if an agency management software fulfills the needs of your agency, you first have to identify those needs. The proverbial bells and whistles of a product or service are of no use if you don’t require bells and whistles. A basic agency management system might be fine for your business if it covers everything you require in a management system. But, if you find that you require more out of your software, you might have to opt for a costlier solution.
To know if an agency management system is right for your business, you’ll need to identify your agency’s:
– Current and future needs
– Expected results
– Ability to learn and adopt new software
You’ll also need to consider whether the software you’re looking at allows you to use it across multiple locations if necessary and if the service can be hosted or requires hosting by the software company.
Long-term viability of the software
As with most business expenses, you’re not so much purchasing software as you are making an investment in software. You’ll want to make sure the software will be viable for years and not become obsolete. You’ll also need to ensure that it’s compatible with your agency’s current hardware, otherwise you’ll be stuck with the expense of upgrading all your hardware just to accommodate the new software.
Another thing to think about is how often the software is updated. Are there regular updates made on a monthly, quarterly or annual basis? You’ll want to make sure that the software you use is maintained and improves over time.
And, obviously, you’ll need to know if updates to the software are going to be free and if so, for how long? If a brand new version of the software becomes available, will your agency be grandfathered in or will you be expected to purchase the new version? All important questions to ask.
Perhaps the biggest concern of anyone who has a presence on the internet is security. It seems like every month a new, major data breach is being reported. The last thing you want is to have the next big data breach story be about your agency because the software you chose to work with turned out to be susceptible to hacking.
Client trust is something that’s incredibly difficult to re-establish once it has been broken. If your agency uses third-party services that are not secure, your agency is just as much to blame as the third-party service provider. Do your homework and check to see if there have been any major security mishaps in the past with the software you’re considering.
Ask the software company:
– What security measures they take to protect client information,
– How often those security measures are updated, and
– How quickly a security breach can be fixed if it happens.
No company stays the same forever. They grow and, unfortunately, sometimes they shrink depending on market conditions. The agency management software you choose should be able to grow and expand with your agency. As you open new offices, welcome new employees and sign up new clients, the software you use should be able to grow with your agency and be adaptable to the new needs of your agency.
As part of that flexibility, scaling up the software’s usage should not be overly costly to do. You’ll need to take into account the cost of allowing more offices and/or people to use it and how much extra features will cost if you require them.
The cost of expanding the software’s usage should be calculated with the initial cost to give you a more accurate picture of your investment.
When it’s time to choose an agency management software solution for your insurance agency, these four elements are the most important to consider. You owe it to your agency, your employees and your clients to choose the best possible agency management solution you can invest in. Evolution Agency Management software has been tailored to be flexible, secure and easy-to-use. Please visit us to book a demo today to find out how we can help your insurance agency grow.