Software for Insurance Agencies in 2020
Since 2016, we’ve been asking life and health insurance agency owners, agents, and staff at agencies of all sizes what technology they utilize in their operations.
We’ve published the results in eBooks and webinars so agencies can get an idea of what others like them are currently using and are planning to utilize in the next year.
This year’s survey was 33 questions regarding database management, commissions processing, and automation. In 2017 and 2018, we asked similar questions, but focused the third part more on marketing automation. The last two years’ surveys expanded that to focus on automation as a whole, including business and marketing efforts.
Respondents this year were from agencies of all sizes and sell mostly health and life insurance to groups, individuals, and seniors.
In this blog, we’ll cover the key findings from the survey. To dive deeper, keep your eye out for an eBook coming out in the next couple weeks. This blog will cover only a small portion of the great insights we have to share.
For the fourth year in a row, most (59% in 2020) insurance agencies are currently using either an industry-specific agency management system (AMS) or a CRM to manage their book of business.
This is compared to spreadsheets and paper files. Paper file use, specifically, has dwindled from 15% of the industry still using them in 2017 to about 9% today.
If you’re wondering about the difference between a generic CRM and an industry-specific agency management system (AMS), check out our brief guide on the subject: AMS vs. CRM: What You Need to Know.
When asked what they plan to do in 2020, 41% of insurance agencies said they plan to switch to a different agency management system or adopt one for the first time. The other 59% plan to remain with their current solution.
We also asked agencies how they plan to research new vendors if they’re planning to make a switch.
Question: Which of these would you do FIRST to research new technology for your agency, like a CRM or AMS?
For the past three years now, our survey has shown that starting with a Google search or by asking a peer is what most agencies do when researching new technology.
Once they’ve reached decision time, agencies say referrals, sales demos, and price influence the purchase decision the most.
If you’re wondering how to effectively research vendors you’re thinking of doing business with, we suggest utilizing this tool: [PDF Download] Beyond the Product Vendor Research Tool.
Most insurance agencies use one of three things to process commissions: spreadsheets, commissions-only software, or an industry-specific agency management system (AMS). Agencies benefit from an AMS that has built-in commissions capabilities because having the data all-in-one system means it can work together cohesively.
To learn more about the benefits of commissions management within an AMS, check out this resource: [Free eBook] The Agency's Guide to Commissions: Efficient Processing, Uncovering Misses, & Analyzing Performance.
Also, for the fourth year in a row, identifying missed commissions continues to be the biggest commissions-related challenge for agencies.
Question: What does your agency struggle with most when it comes to commissions processing?
In 2020, only 29% of insurance agencies say they are utilizing workflow automation tools.
Question: Does your agency utilize automation tools?
Workflow automation tools include technology your agency uses to automate manual tasks, such as automated email reminders for policy renewals, automated task assignments to agents, etc.
For those that are or have been using automation, most say they’ve been utilizing it for 1-3 years with another large group using it for more than 7 years.
Question: How long have you been using automation tools at your agency?
In 2020, 40% of insurance agencies plan to implement automation tools for the first time; 20% plan to increase use of automation tools.
Database Management, Commissions Processing, and Automation
Our survey this year has confirmed that the three components mentioned above are crucial for insurance agencies to have in any life and health agency management system.
Again, be on the lookout for an eBook in the coming weeks that will dive much deeper into the survey findings.
To learn more about how these three tools work together to make AgencyBloc The #1 Agency Recommended Management System in our 5-minute overview video.
Watch an overview of AgencyBloc now!