Learn why it’s important to look beyond a product and how to choose the right agency management system vendor for your agency.
If you’re a life, health, and/or benefits agency looking to support your agency with a new agency management system (AMS) or other software solution, you’re likely doing some research to find the right fit.
While you may focus on the product or solution, it’s important to keep in mind that the company behind the software is equally, if not more, important. Let’s explore why looking beyond a product matters and how investing in a true agency partner can drive your business forward, plus how to find the right vendor.
Purchasing a Product Versus Investing in a Partner
Have you ever bought a new product–let’s say a computer, for example–and you almost immediately run into problems while using it? After searching online or through your manual, you’re still stumped, so you call customer service only to speak with a robot or automated system. Imagine a similarly frustrating experience across your entire agency as they try to use new software without the right support or resources.
Quickly finding and purchasing a product can be a simple solution to meet your immediate needs. If it’s the right fit, it can even enhance your business. However, you still need to consider the partnership available from the company behind the software. If you don’t, you might find yourself in one or more of the following exasperating situations:
- Having inadequate initial training to get the tools you need up and running in a timely manner
- Lacking a quick way to reach a customer service representative with questions or issues
- No access to a help center when learning how to use all of the software’s capabilities
- Getting pushed to the back burner because your agency’s needs aren’t a priority
Instead, choose a solution that’s backed by a partner dedicated to supporting your agency.
The Benefits of Investing in a Software Partner
You may have fears when choosing a software vendor. You may be concerned that a new software won’t solve what you had hoped, that it will open you to security vulnerabilities, or perhaps worst of all, that your new solution may cost much more than it’s worth. These are valid concerns, which is why it’s so important to vet your technology vendor. The right vendor can provide:
- Data migration process management to ease software transitions
- Efficient, helpful onboarding and training to equip your entire team
- Continued service and support throughout the partnership because each use case is unique
- Security and software maintenance to keep your sensitive data safe
- Software enhancements tailored to your feedback for continued improvement
- Educational resources to help you learn more about your AMS and insurance industry best practices so you stay ahead of the curve
Partnering with a vendor that’s dedicated to quality customer service can save you the headache of choosing the wrong software because you overlooked critical service factors. Plus, one that provides a true partnership can help you long-term as your agency evolves.
At AgencyBloc, we provide all of the resources above and more to help you work more efficiently and effectively.
How To Find the Right Insurance Software Vendor
The fast-paced nature of the insurance industry coupled with new and existing clients needing your expertise means you probably have limited time to research a new product or agency partner. However, it’s better to thoroughly vet potential vendors now than to hastily choose a product only to find that it isn’t what you expected after you’ve paid the fees and onboarded your team.
Even though the software itself could be the right fit, the people behind the company need to fit well, too. Unfortunately, not all insurance agencies consider this during the sales process.
What can you do to ensure you do your due diligence researching software vendors?
Remember, you can find most of what you’re looking for with a little extra online research and the right vendor research resources. To help you, we compiled a list of our favorite resources:
As you research, look into the software vendor’s history, employees, social media, and more, and schedule a demo to get a closer look into how the product really works. You want to feel confident about your software purchasing decision, and doing your due diligence can help you ensure both the product and the people providing it are the right fit.
[PDF Download] Beyond the Product Vendor Research Tool
Use this downloadable PDF to filter through your potential software vendors as you search for the right one.
This blog was originally published on December 11, 2018, and updated on November 29, 2022.