The global insurance industry features millions of workers and millions of clients all around the globe. In developed countries, citizens realize the importance of insurance and try to get personal policies actively. In other areas, both private and state-backed companies focus on the education of people and promotion of insurance benefits. With a growing number of clients and increasing arrays of data, modern underwriters barely can handle all the tasks without using a proper insurance agency management software. Further, we will talk about this concept in details to cover definitions, types, benefits, and possible issues with the software.
Software used by insurance companies in a nutshell
Put simply, applications that insurance teams use are similar to other managerial/accounting tools but focused on this particular industry. Means, this software should solve a few specific tasks that are typical for insurers, agencies, and brokers. Talking about exact apps, the software used by insurance companies combines the main ideas of ERP tools (for in-house management) and CRM programs (for interactions with clients).
Precisely, there are five functional areas for insurance applications:
- Analyze insurance commissions.
- Automate workflows.
- Keep all the data in a single library.
- Predict the changes with reports.
- Track the entire sales process.
Technically, all programs can be deployed on your own servers or located in the cloud. For small insurance agency management systems, we’d suggest choosing a cloud-based deployment type to avoid hosting and upgrading costs. However, if you want to get full control over the software, request it to be installed in-house.
But when you really focus on total control, it’s better to opt for custom programs created for your team especially. Thus, let’s look at the next classification by customization level.
Firstly, there are ready-made applications with predefined functions. Consider them as standard drinks at McDonald’s, e.g. Coca-Cola or Fanta. You can’t change receipts but can add or remove ice, for example. Each off-the-shelf insurance system from a given vendor is the same for all clients of this vendor so these programs don’t provide for any market advantage. However, they are relatively cheap and feature short time-to-market.
Agent & Broker Software (ABS)
The next type is called ABS and serves for insurance agents and brokers. It’s like traditional coffee with different supplements on your choice. ABS has a much higher level of customization so it sits between off-the-shelf and bespoke solutions. These applications feature modular systems so each customer can choose which components he/she wants to get in the final product. As a result, all teams from small startups to large MNCs can benefit from using ABS.
This type of insurance agency management software comes with the greatest level of customization. It’s similar to a fully custom drink in Starbucks, for example. With custom developers, you can discuss the wishes and market goals and then wait for the result. It’s easy to add, remove or replace any module to get the most suitable software. Bespoke systems take more time to be launched but they feature high competitive advantage because each app is unique.
Benefits of small insurance agency management systems
Well, but how these applications can help your business? Why you ever should opt for insurance software? Generally, the answer is in various benefits provided by these apps. Modern companies can hardly exist without digital tools and, particularly, without industry-specific modules focused on unique tasks.
Further, we list a few reasons why each insurance company should implement at least one advanced software app. Note that our company delivers all of the mentioned benefits because we can create custom software and reprogram legacy systems to provide the best results. Here are the key functions:
- Analysis. Delivers various options to search and sort data and, respectively, generate different reports to reveal the brand’s performance.
- Automation. Generates automated reports and emails, creates and delivers notifications, arranges info using templates to create key documents.
- Control. Monitors all the ongoing processes with main focus on transactions, user requests, and calculations; reduces the number of human errors.
- Integration. Works perfectly with other in-house applications like spreadsheets or analytical tools, plus connects with third-party services, e.g. telephony.
- Storage. Keeps and protects every bit of information, remembers customers’ personal details, and provides access to this data to all authorized employees.
Remember that you can change exact modules to get the best custom product. Our experts help with in-depth market analysis so your team will get all the essential insights to be able to plan goals and list the most demanded features.
Potential pitfalls of insurance software programs
Despite various cool advantages, insurance solutions aren’t as easy to develop and implement as you can think. For example, each application must come with top-notch security features to protect sensitive data of customers, info about transactions, and the brand’s insides. Simultaneously, the apps should be simple yet powerful to allow your employees to use them without issues and meet core goals.
Overall, potential problems with the programs used by insurance companies can be combined into three types or 3S as we call them:
- Software. Here are issues with programming basements, functional modules, development, implementation, scalability, and performance related to tech errors. These problems can be solved with the required fixes and upgrades. Often, custom devs improve their solutions for less cost that vendors of premade apps.
- Staff. A lot of managers rarely prioritize end users. Even the most polished application with the perfect modules tailored to the brand’s needs may fail to show expected results if your employees don’t know how to use it or simply don’t like it. Thus, it’s better to consult with staff and don’t forget about proper training.
- Suitability. This point includes different consistency issues. Let’s say, you purchase a cheap product but it doesn’t have all the desired features. Or, instead, you get a quite costly application that includes dozens of modules but, actually, you don’t need all of them. In this case, custom developers can help you again.
These three crucial problems may lead to painful consequences. That’s why planning is obligatory for insurance teams that must remember about tech, people, and goals of the company. Without at least one component the software turns into low-efficient programs. Vice versa, when all three points are taken into account, you have good chances to succeed.
Cooperation with custom developers acts as wonderful protection from 3S. Our company takes care of software development, testing, maintenance, and support so you can forget about tech issues. All the needed updates are delivered regularly and without extra costs, if this point was included in the initial contract. As well, we train and consult employees to be sure that the entire team understands and accepts new apps.
Finally, our key advantage relates to all-in-one custom approach. We begin with detailed discussions about your company, your goals, and the desired software features. As a result, our developers create the most suitable products that fit the requirements of each client. We always try to reach the perfect balance between prices and complexity to deliver only important functions without unnecessary expenses.
Insurance agency management systems cost
To show the exact breakdown of costs, it’s better to split the entire insurance software concept into two smaller parts. Firstly, there are CRM applications – programs that focus on interactions with clients and keeping their info exclusively. On a par with them, ERP tools exist. These systems are much more complex as they handle all in-house and external tasks, from HR and accounting to the already mentioned interactions.
Despite all the differences, both types have three similar pricing models:
- Monthly fee: certain amount per month per user. These apps are often hosted in the clouds, have low customization level, and several plans with different features.
- One-time payment: a fixed price per user or for a product at all. Here, contracts often include different services apart from development, e.g. tech support and upgrading.
- Quote-based price: any scheme that suits both parties. The most common model for custom devs that provides for great flexibility in agreements.
Thus, let’s look at two categories with slightly different costs.
Prices of life insurance agent CRM tools
Usually, CRM platforms feature lower costs than more complicated ERP applications. According to Capterra, prices vary from $0 to $300 per user per month depending on the brand’s popularity and exact features included. Some companies offer yearly plans that may go up to $2,000 per user while others also feature one-time payment models with prices like $1,000-$5,000 per license. Note that these sums rarely include further customization or extra services.
Prices of insurance ERP apps
As ERP programs are more complicated, they feature higher prices. Sure, some companies also deliver tools with monthly fees and they can be as low as $10 per user per month. However, more often, vendors feature license prices: from $300 to $3,000 per year, according to Capterra, again. Even more often, you will see software applications with one-time payments. In this case, the cheapest ERP apps start from $10,000 and may go up to $10 million for corporations.
In the last part of this article, we gathered the most essential info about insurance agency management software. The next five points partially duplicate insights from the previous paragraphs but that’s all right. You can skip them or check again to remember the most important things.
What is an agency software for insurers?
Simply put, this term covers all programs that facilitate insurance agency processes and operations. Google Spreadsheets and Excel are examples of agency software, technically. However, we define this concept as programs designed for the needs of insurers exclusively. It can be insurance accounting tools, insurance CRM or insurance ERP, and so on.
What are the key functions of insurance systems?
They should store protected data related to the brand and its clients, track key processes like sales or transactions, analyze information and generate reports, provide enough control over the workflows, automate these workflows, and support integration with third-party programs. As a result, insurance apps should boost the efficiency of insurance teams.
How insurance software benefits workers and users?
For employees, these applications provide for better automation and, respectively, less time spent on mundane tasks. For users, the software delivers better engagement and a higher level of involvement. Hence, both parties can interact better to boost their experience.
How to create a custom insurance agency management software?
Long story short, the best choice is to cooperate with custom development companies. Teams like our beloved DICEUS focus on perfect final results. All you need is conclude the brand’s requirements, deliver them to devs, and provide timely feedback during the creation. Partners will handle other tasks.
What are total costs of insurance apps?
You can even find free products but applications with enough cool features cost from $30 to $300 per month per user or from $300 to $3,000 per year. Custom developers list higher costs with average numbers between $100,000 and $1 million depending on the size and goals. Remember that custom solutions often come with various extra services included.
Hope, you got the idea. Applications are different and you can choose between various types. Some companies are happy with prepackaged systems while others require tailored custom products. However, the main insight is right here: insurance agency management software is useful and really profitable but only when you really need it. Think about your business goals before purchasing any product so you will be able to avoid unnecessary expenses.
Our team of developers, analysts, and managers can plan, create, and integrate any software for insurers. We deliver unique apps designed for each customer exclusively. We also rethink and update existing programs. Feel free to ask us if you still have questions about insurance apps!