Commissions Processing Made Simple
As an agency owner or commissions staff, managing commissions is a huge part of your job. Unfortunately, you haven’t always been blessed with easy ways to do it. In fact, many agencies are still using outdated solutions.
What Life and Health Agencies Use to Manage Commissions
Life and health insurance agencies generally use one of three technologies to manage their commissions:
- Commissions-specific software
- Insurance agency management system
The first option, spreadsheets, aren’t usually a long-term option for most agencies. They are erroneous, time-consuming, and prove difficult when trying to quickly pull up information or analyze performance as a whole.
The second option, commissions-specific software, can be expensive. Why? Because an API connection or integration will need to be setup in order to pull necessary information from your CRM, and, unfortunately, this can be costly. It can be costly from a maintenance standpoint and from a resources standpoint, working with two separate software systems.
Thus, the third option, an agency management system with commission tools, is usually the most viable choice for life and health agencies. With an industry-specific CRM and commission tools in one system, your agency runs as efficiently as possible.
[eBook] Switching from Excel Spreadsheets to an Industry-Specific Agency Management System: How and Why
Over 25% of agencies are still using Excel spreadsheets or paper files to manage their book of business. In this eBook, we discuss why agencies are making the switch to industry-specific software and how your agency can do the same.
Commissions Setup in AgencyBloc
In AgencyBloc, some initial setup is necessary for processing commissions. Once steps 1-3 are complete, you don’t need to repeat them (except for any new data going forward).
Step 1: Set Up Policies
The first step is to set up your clients and their policies. This can be done via our import process or manually.
*Note: This is the minimum amount of information necessary to process commissions. Typically, agencies will track additional information for customer service and cross-sell opportunities.
Step 2: Set Up Rate Tables
The next step is to set up rate tables that can be referenced by multiple policies. Rate tables can be configured with multiple rates: using percent of premium, percent of commission received, per life, or as a flat amount. They can also specify payouts based on carrier, coverage type, or plan code. If compensation adjustments need to be made, rate schedules offer a convenient way to quickly adjust payouts for hundreds of policies.
*Note: Rate tables can be simple or complex depending on your needs. Our service team can provide you with assistance to establish the right structure for your needs.
Step 3: Tie Payees to Policies
Policies may have an unlimited number of agents assigned for commissions. Typical scenarios include paying a referral fee, trainer fee, manager override, or agency override. Each of these agents can be paid differently. Typically, a rate schedule will be utilized for each payee; however, if a unique payout is required, a manual amount can be specified.
Payee schedules allow you to add more than one payee to a policy. Add payees to a hierarchy, each with their respective commission rates/amounts, and then add them to a group. Finally, add whole groups to policies.
Commissions Processing in AgencyBloc
Step 4: Import Carrier File
AgencyBloc was built to save time and improve accuracy in commissions processing. With these two goals in mind, the most appreciated aspect of our system hinges on Carrier Imports.
If your agency is receiving electronic commission statements, we can build import maps for directly importing that information into AgencyBloc. When these files are uploaded, AgencyBloc will match the information to the policies you have set up and automatically calculate commissions. This import process significantly reduces the amount of time spent manually inputting data.
*Note: Once your account has been configured, the import and payment calculation will take only seconds. Our clients have carrier imports containing tens of thousands of records; it takes less than 2 minutes to process these files.
In the event some carriers aren’t providing you with electronic commission statements, AgencyBloc supports a “Standard Import” that can still assist in streamlining commissions processing.
Step 5: Calculate/Reconcile Commissions
Reconciliation is a simple process. When commissions are imported, you’ll see which policies were linked to the carrier’s statement, each payment that was calculated, and any policies that didn’t match. AgencyBloc highlights any exceptions that require further investigation as well as a quick snapshot of total premiums, total commissions payable, and net commissions.
Step 6: Generate Commission Statements
Once all your carrier commissions are reconciled for the payment period, you’re ready to generate commission statements. Statements can be run in spreadsheet or PDF format. You can run statements monthly, bi-weekly or daily, if you choose. Statements can be organized by sub-agency in order to facilitate paying multiple companies under your agency.
Agent statements show the premium paid and the amount owed for each policy, and you can organize your statements by carrier or policyholder.
- Basic policy information (number, name, coverage type, etc)
- Premium paid (if the carrier file provided that information)
- Dollar amount owed to the agent for each policy
Customize your commission statements to fit your agency’s needs.
Brand your statements by adding your logo and address. Also, choose which data to show (or not show), like premium, month, lives, commission received, and commission received with percent.
Analyzing Performance with Reports & Real-Time Graphs
Monitoring and analyzing performance is crucial for agency growth. Knowing where you’ve been is critical to guide your agency in the direction you want to go.
With AgencyBloc, view business performance with real-time graphs and robust reporting tools.
Graphs and charts are updated in real-time in AgencyBloc based on the activity in your book of business. From a commissions perspective, you’ll see things like:
- Top commissions received by carrier and by agent
- Net commissions by carrier
- Net vs. received commissions by coverage type
- Actual vs. projected commissions by month and by coverage type
Use these graphs to view a snapshot of commissions activity in your agency. Beyond commissions, AgencyBloc shows graphs for all other areas of your business including individuals, groups, policies, and carriers.
Standard & Custom Reporting
Use standard commission reports in AgencyBloc to view specific data for a period of time. Reports available include:
- Agent statements - view premium paid and amount owed for each policy.
- Commission totals - view the total premium and commission paid to an agent or agency.
- Commission not received - uncover missed commission payments from the carrier.
- Commission payments - how much commission the agency earned, who received payment and how.
- Commission received/paid - commission paid to the agency, paid to agents, and the net commission left over.
- Commission received by policy or by group - what dates commission payments were received by policy or across all policies for a group.
- Actual vs. expected - compare what you received with what you projected.
- Projection tables - find which policies are connected to what projection table. Make sure you have the right table for each policy.
- Policy commission payees - view which payee is set to get paid commission on each policy.
- Commission projections - find what commissions are projected on each policy.
If you’re in need of something else, use Custom Reporting! Filter down to only the data you want to see, and choose which columns you’d like to include.
From initial setup to end reports, commissions processing in AgencyBloc is easy and efficient. In fact, those who’ve switched to AgencyBloc have spent 75% less time processing commissions and have found tens of thousands of dollars in missed commissions. One agency was even able to reinvest $30,000 usually spent in processing commissions back into their business.
Ready to see if AgencyBloc’s commission tools are right for your agency? The best way to learn more is to schedule a live, 1-on-1 demo and chat with someone about your agency’s specific needs.
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