Are you tired of manually handling your insurance company’s processes? Are your workers getting overwhelmed by the amount of workload, reducing their productivity? If you’re looking for ways on how to enhance your insurance agency’s operation, then it’s time you considered integrating an Agent Management System (AMS) for your business. AMS is a tool that helps insurance agencies to run and manage their day-to-day activities. Since the tool handles your daily tasks, choosing the right AMS tool for your agency is crucial. This article will guide you in the selection process.
Follow the following tips as you select a suitable AMS tool:
1. Identify Your Agency Needs
First, understand the areas in which your business lacks by using feedback from your team. From their feedback, create a list of the things that need to be done with the help of the insurance tool and those that aren’t necessary but would be a plus if the software performed them. The wants and needs of your business must be congruent with your company’s goals or mission. The goals aren’t a limitation to your choice but they provide a guide.
2. Assess The Available AMS Tools
Different companies, such as Better Agency AMS offer different AMS tools which perform various functions. Therefore, it’s essential to choose one that will best suit your business operation.
Research on the available AMS tools for your specific industry, in this case, insurance. Getting an industry-specific tool ensures it will benefit your business needs in many aspects.
Ensure you select a tool that can meet all the previously laid out business needs. If none meets all the requirements, compromise by picking the one that satisfies most of them. Read the tool’s features to know what they can and can’t do. Some of the features to consider are its speed of running tasks, ease of use, and integration with other systems. The tool should seamlessly integrate with your already existing technologies and tools for the efficient running of your agency.
Security features of a tool are another essential aspect to consider. The chosen software will run most of your primary business operations, including customer information, using the internet. Therefore, the tools should offer enough security to prevent data theft and malware attacks that could take your business through a significant loss. Some of the things to inquire regarding software protection are the authentication process, security restrictions availability, level of encryption, number of times back-up is done, and where the data is stored.
Understand how each of the available options works to make an informed decision. Seek assistance from your IT team and vendors who provide the tools. Remember to check for the certification of the software.
3. Ask For A Free Trial
As you assess the available tools in the market, you may have to choose between two to three of your preferences. Ask for a demo from their providers to assess the performance before you make a decision on which one to buy. Integrate them into your system and see how each of them solves your current agency’s problems. Limit your choice to two or three to reduce confusion and indecisiveness.
4. Get Feedback From The Demo
Ask for feedback from your staff before the trial period is over. Your team should inform you how the different systems performed and solve any previous issues. Weigh the pros and cons to allow you to make an informed decision. Your IT team should tell you how the tools operated with the traditional systems and technology and if they encountered any difficulties. With the feedback received, you’ll be more decided on the software to incorporate into your insurance agency permanently.
5. Identify A Vendor
It is imperative to select a reliable vendor for your AMS tool to avoid any risk of getting scammed. Check a vendor's credibility by looking at reviews on their services and products from previous customers. Other things to check are their costs, customer support services, contract terms, among others. Your IT team should be familiar with reputable brands that provide AMS tools near you that you can assess. Ask friends, family, and business partners for referrals. Choose a vendor that offers the best services, including after-sale services at an affordable price.
Additionally, ask if the vendor upgrades their tools and how often it’s done. A software that can be upgraded ensures it grows as your business grows. You don’t want to acquire a tool that your business operations will outgrow after several years, rendering it useless. It will require you to purchase another tool, leaving you with additional costs.
6. Consider Costs
Different vendors may offer different costs for the same tool.
Besides the initial cost of acquiring the AMS tool, associated costs also come with the product. The extra costs are related to training, support, installation, data migration, and others. Ensure you ask about other fees you might incur besides acquiring the product since different vendors offer different services.
Select a vendor and AMS tool whose overall cost doesn’t exceed your insurance agency’s budget. See if the monthly license fees you have to pay for are reasonable based on the tool's return on investment (ROI). The tool should aim at eliminating most, if not all, of your overhead costs at the agency.
7. Make A Decision
After going through all the steps and tips given, decide on the preferred AMS tool for your insurance agency. The chosen tool should meet your business needs, be cost-effective, increase productivity, and make work easier and manageable for your team and agency.
Choosing the right AMS tool for your insurance agency is a crucial decision that could make or break the operations of your business. Therefore, it’s important to take your time and be meticulous as you decide on the best tool. The number one factor that should guide you is your business needs. The other factors discussed in this article come second. Remember to work with your IT team to select the best product for your business, mainly due to systems integration. You can also seek advice from other insurance businesses using AMS software. However, be cautious as you seek help from your business rivals.
About Author: John J. McDowell is a small business owner and a business coach. He gives talks and holds workshops about the best business practices for business leaders with an aim of empowering them individually. During his free time, he loves hiking, playing football, and bird viewing.
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