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Creating Insurance Agency Management Software – DIGIS

Creating Insurance Agency Management Software

Introduction 

The insurance industry is one of the major drivers of any state’s economy as it collects huge amounts of premiums. Health and life insurance of the population serves as a metric to measure wealth of the state and how it promotes a healthy lifestyle among its population. 

insurance direct premiums written

Source: The Insurance Information Institute, 2019

According to the Insurance Information Institute, the insurance industry demonstrates steady growth in terms of the amount of premiums written, and reached in 2018 as much as over USD 5 trillion, increasing by USD 200 mln relative to 2017. 

world life and nonlife insurance direct premiums written

Source: The Insurance Information Institute, 2019

These huge figures mean that more and more individuals and businesses come to insurance agencies to buy suitable insurance policies, be it for their life or health (individual insurance) or for property/risks/etc. (insurance for business entities). Obviously, the scope of the document work an average insurance agency has to perform on a daily routine basis can make unprepared persons go insane as it is really material. 

But those persons can stay calm as insurance agencies has started migrating their key operations into dedicated CRM software for insurance industry. The process has started but is quite far from the end as multiple insurance companies and brokers still ‘dance’ in an old-fashioned manner preferring paper notebooks and client files. They do keep the logs and records in separate locations and applications like electronic spreadsheets, computer address books etc., losing days and months of time just on switching between these tools…This article is specifically purposed for such agencies and brokers as it will provide a comprehensive information about insurance software solutions that can simplify their routines and raise their efficiency to a way higher level. We will also tell the readers about available software solutions for insurance industry, provide some tips to be accounted for when building an agency management system for insurance. You will learn about the steps to be taken to create a software for insurance company, make a software for insurance agents, and, generally, make an insurance CRM software. Finally, you will find out the cost to build a CRM software for insurance.

Why Should You Develop an Insurance Management Software?

insurance crm

If you want your business to succeed in the modern world, you cannot go without software, especially if your business anticipate any kind of interaction with customers. Your insurance business needs to be very customer-oriented in order to conquer customer satisfaction and, respectively, increase sales volumes. You need to automate certain routine operations as they consume the biggest part of your resources, both in terms of time and staff. You need to store sensitive customer information over a long period of time which seems not very likely if you store this on paper or in a dozen of different applications. 

All these things, certainly, can be done by several people using multiple tools: Microsoft Word, Excel, Power Point, MySQL, and so. But so many people and so many software will 100% lead to important data loss, overdue policies, missed calls or appointments and so on. The solution for a respectable insurance agency would be to purchase an Off-the-Shelf insurance agency management system software or find reliable insurance software developers and contract them to build an insurance agency software. Some of the businesses purchase generic CRM solutions as they want to save some money and believe that universal CRM will work okay for their needs. However, it is not the right choice, as insurance operations are different from retailer’s activity or recruiting agency tasks. Specifics of the insurance business is 100% redundancy of the client data as the clients don’t come to the insurance offices too often and average terms of insurance policies can reach from 10 to 50 years. So, as you can imagine safe data storage of insurance-specific data is a must. Secondly, insurance CRMs need to have internal insurance premium calculation tools to be able to do all the calculations within the single place. Next, such solutions need to account for the client’s lifestyle to enable providing the client with a matching insurance offering. Finally, such solutions must have some connectivity with the client’s social profiles to track their behavior and adjust the insurance plan accordingly. These all features are strange to generic CRM and are present only in the specialized insurance agency software solutions.

Benefits of a Custom CRM Insurance Management System 

insurance crm benefits

The biggest and the critical benefit of any custom CRM solution for insurance agency business is that it lets the insurance brokers focus on the really important matters such as communicating with the clients and selling the insurance policies. All routines, to include, among other, reminders,  data storage, filtering and storage, insurance quote drafting, adjustment and dispatching, etc. can be left to a CRM tool.  

Opposite to the off-the-shelf systems, custom management software for insurance agencies can provide the following benefits:

Flexibility

When you order insurance crm software development on a custom basis, you would get an unprecedented level of flexibility in terms of the system functionality, budget and schedule. We want to say that you order and pay only for those features that you need in your operations, without sponsoring developers of the COTS insurance solutions. 

Better data management

You can request the developers of your custom CRM system to implement some proprietary algorithms and tools you are used to in order to ensure enhanced data management across your business, be it personal data of the customers or information about insurance carriers, or details of the policies etc. 

Increased efficiency

Routine operations are no longer bothering the insurance brokers as all tasks on emailing, reminders, notifications etc. are from now on performed by the automated system. So the insurance agents can do what they are paid for. 

Security

Off-the-shelf systems are available to everyone, so anyone of these ‘everyone’ can hack the system if needed. Custom solutions are built for their targeted users and are in possession of no one else. Cybersecurity is ensured, data is safe. 

Scalability

In case of future expansion of the business, scaling your custom-built CRM system up won’t require you to pay as much money as you would pay to adapt a ready-made software. 

Uniqueness-driven Competitiveness

COTS CRM software for insurance business could be cheaper than the custom ones, but they all are non-unique as offer same features for same buyers. Meanwhile, the custom insurance software can have as many unique functions as you have ordered, putting you far ahead of your competitors in terms of uniqueness.

Main Features of Insurance Software Solutions

Storage of Agency- and Clients-related Data 

Insurance agencies maintain huge volumes of the documents containing much data about the clients and about the agency operations. This can be paper policies, bills, personnel timetables, trip reports etc. CRM software helps convert these all papers into soft copy of the contained data and properly organize and store all the data in the electronic database that allows quick and secure access to such data from any location.

Business-Critical Processes Tracking 

Business process monitoring lets an insurance agency to measure and analyze how its critical processes are performed, via a set of dedicated metrics. Based on such monitoring and analysis, the insurance agency can proactively identify a problem and take a grounded decision as to resolve it and, generally, improve the business process performance efficiency. 

Insurance Commissions Analysis

Insurance commission is, in other words, an earning of an insurance agency. The commissions are paid to insurance brokers out of the clients’ insurance premiums. Specialized CRM solutions host specialized tools to calculate and then analyze the insurance commissions per individual client, per client category, per insurance type etc. 

Sales Performance Reporting 

Reporting is very important as each business needs to report to the regulating authorities such as tax administrations, licensing bodies etc. Insurance agency’s rate of efficiency is determined based on a number of sold insurance policies, which can be offered by multiple insurance providers or carriers. Custom-built management software for insurance agencies has embedded reporting features allowing to create, automatically, reports on the agency’s sales performance. Reports can be auto-generated on a daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly or yearly basis, depending on the purpose of such report. 

External Integrations

Connectivity with third-party software solutions should be additionally agreed upon when you order custom insurance CRM software development. This link is needed to export data to the outside for reporting/accounting needs, for providing the clients with the needed printouts. It is also needed to import client- and insurance-specific data from external applications, for example, from hospital CRM solutions, other insurance software systems etc. 

Workflows Control and Automation 

Any business has its specific workflows, consisting of certain tasks, instructions, activities etc. A good CRM system, especially in the insurance industry, helps define which steps or actions are needed to manage orders, track their status in real time, use certain color-coding scheme to visualize each workflow stage. It also allows creating tasks for responsible persons based on their roles and authorizations, launch new works automatically upon completion of the previous tasks etc. All these things can be and, actually, are mostly automated in well-thought and perfectly built CRM software for insurance companies.

Custom Solutions vs Off-The-Shelf Solutions 

Custom Solutions vs Off-The-Shelf Solutions

The most obvious difference between made-to-order insurance CRM solutions and software available off-the-shelf is that ready-made systems in most cases have multiple features which significantly influence the solution cost but which are not necessarily needed to all of the insurance agencies purchasing such systems. Such features make it more difficult and confusing to use these systems and require additional training sessions for the system users.  

We’ve asked some of the insurance brokerage businesses about their opinion as to the biggest issues they find in the COTS insurance software and the major advantages of custom-made solutions. Their answers are provided in the table below.

Pros Cons
Commercial over-the-shelf CRM solutions for insurance
Price Lack of flexibility
Immediate availability Missing features
Lack of integrations with third-party apps
Poor customization capabilities
Additional training needed
Confusing navigation
Poor support
Data security can be compromised
Custom insurance CRM software
Perfect adjustability to the business needs Price
High scalability Necessity to wait 
Security
Uniqueness
External integrations
High level of customization
Etc.

As we can see, the insurance businesses opt for custom software solutions, even with consideration of a longer waiting time to get such solutions on hands.

How Do We Create Insurance Agency Management Software? 

So, having walked this interesting but bumpy road of making a decision to order custom CRM software for insurance agents, you need to make one last run to get your desired software. We encourage you to take the following steps. 

Create Insurance Agency Management Software

Step 1

Compile a list of all challenges you want to counter with the system. DIGIS advise you to perform an in-depth analysis of your business processes in order to find out where they can be improved

Step 2

Write down all the requirements to the software product. 

During this stage, you need to do the market analysis and study commercially available systems. It is needed to identify what features that you need they have and what they do not. Results of this analysis will translate into your initial requirements as to the CRM software for your insurance company. 

Step 3

Again, you need to carry out some research. This time it is needed to find a trustworthy CRM software development company. When analysing potential contractors, ask them to provide some examples of similar projects they have accomplished. Use recommendations from your colleagues or competitors. Google for reviews about the short-listed candidates. 

Step 4

After selecting a matching vendor and awarding the contract, be sure to monitor the progress of the development. DIGIS, for example, welcomes our clients to regularly reach out to us to touch-base the process and discuss any issues or aspects of the development. It allows both the Customer and the contractor to stay on the same page as regards the future product. 

Step 5

With all that being said, trust your development partner unless they show any sign of underperformance or if you feel that they are not as competent as you’ve expected. Trust is one of the success drivers and is a basis for long-term business relations between the partners. 
Being a software development company with over a decade of custom software engineering experience, DIGIS, in case of getting a contract to build a CRM software for insurance, would allocate our best resources – software developers, designers, testers – to satisfy all reasonable requirements of the customer, for sure.  Usually, we offer to start with a solution MVP as it is very cost- and time-efficient option to validate the business idea and see whether the final product is going to be a success. If everything is okay, we continue with adding all the needed components on top of the CRM system skeleton until it gets its projected and agreed structure and functionality. After that we do the tests to catch all bugs, inconsistencies, errors etc and fix them to make the product flawless. After the ready product is demonstrated to the Customer and accepted by the Customer, DIGIS performs its official handover. Each stage is performed in the proper timing, according to the approved project schedule.

Conclusion

Insurance industry is seeing an obvious growth, which we believe is related to an increasing use of software solutions to manage insurance company operations and to improve insurance customer satisfaction. With so many options of such software systems, available immediately, over-the-shelf, custom development seems to be unnecessary. It actually is, unless you need a system that fits only your insurance business, that is as secure as you expect, that is as unique as you want, and that can help you reach your goals. Custom insurance CRM systems offer unique level of flexibility, functionality, scalability, and security, which is not likely to be repeated by the ready-made solutions.  For sure, the customer, that is, you, is the one to make this choice. But if still don’t know what to choose – custom or ready software, come to us, and we will help you to bring all your concerns to light and address them in a grounded manner. Reach out to DIGIS to get 100% consultation on all aspects of custom CRM system development for the insurance business.