This third-generation family-controlled insurance brokerage, with some 900 employees nationwide, ranks among the top 20 in the country; in the regions where it competes, it typically ranks in the top five.
Its sales-driven culture—stressed from the executives straight down to the sales team—focused on personal, face-to-face relationships.
Historically, this had served the company well. It had fueled its growth, and empowered numerous acquisitions of smaller firms.
But the old ways of doing business were facing headwinds.
The recently-hired COO had her work cut out for her. She saw that the company’s culture of high-touch work activities, combined with loosely-standardized business processes, was squandering costly resources.
The issues were pervasive, stretching from the most critical tasks, such as sales prospecting, to the most mundane, such as endorsements.
The firm’s technology planning seemed to over-focus on “the next big systems upgrade.” Meantime, efforts at installing digital automation had stalled.
The historical leader was slipping. Without an injection of discipline and digital capabilities, this acquirer could end up as an acquisition target.
It was time for the COO to call The Lab.
Using The Lab’s database of Structured Discovery Templates™ for insurance brokerages, the eight-week Phase I analysis covered numerous end-to-end business processes, including:
• Sales prospecting
• Application intake and QC
• Customer issue resolution
• Carrier billing
The templates—which included industry-standard KPIs, data taxonomies, business process maps, operations benchmarks, best practices, automation use cases, and more—enabled rapid documentation and analysis of more than 85 percent of employee work activities, right down to the two-minute level.
The Lab identified over 150 activity-level improvements. More than half required no technology at all; the rest could use existing systems. More than 40 processes were identified as automation candidates.
In the company, even the strongest advocates of the face-to-face business model were stunned to discover that performance of identical sales activities varied, from employee to employee, anywhere from 3x to 20x.
And while executives assumed that sales reps devoted most of their time to prospecting, cross-selling, and training new recruits, nothing could be further from the truth.
Instead, they were spending the bulk of their days on un-necessary, avoidable, and automate-able tasks, such as processing applications that were either missing information, or simply “dead on arrival.”
The self-funding, eight-month Phase II implementation plan targeted sales effectiveness, staff uptime, customer experience, and operating cost. Examples:
1. Salesperson admin relief. The application process was automated, with a user-friendly intake form that cut rework by half. Renewals were semi-automated by robotic process automation (RPA) bots. Correspondence was standardized and digitized, where it was auto-populated with custom information for policyholders.
2. New “Prospect Data Factory.” Economically developed using existing systems data, external lead databases, and RPA bots, this provided quantitative evaluation of prospect viability, product profitability, and sales strategy. It then delivered prioritized opportunities for cross-selling existing policyholders and developing new, high-potential customers.
3. Bot-empowered CRM. To relieve the burden on salespeople of manual data entry for prospects, lead management, and sales-activity tracking, The Lab built a “team” of AI-enabled bots to clean and upload pre-scored prospect lists, define cross-sell opportunities and “next best actions,” assign leads to reps, and then monitor sales activity, keeping management updated.
These are just the highlights. Get more detail on this fascinating case study by reading the full version here.
Client: Insurance Brokerage United States
Sponsor: Chief Operating Officer
• 8-week Analysis and Discovery
• 8-month Implementation
• No new technology required
• Sales Support
• Application Processing
• Customer Service
• Increase sales productivity
• Reduce operating expense
• Accelerate digital automation
• Improve CRM utilization
• Operating cost: Down 18%
• Salesperson uptime: Up 30%
• Inbound leads: Up 10%
• Application error rate: Down 50%
• Break-even point: 5 months
• 12-month ROI: 4x
Learn more about how The Lab has been helping insurance brokerages for nearly 30 years; we invite you to schedule your free, no-obligation 30-minute screen-sharing demo.
You’ll learn more about our patented approach to Knowledge Work Standardization®. You’ll see actual E2E process maps and RPA bots in action. You’ll learn how we are able to do all this, remotely, from our U.S. offices in Houston, with nothing outsourced or offshored, ever. And you’ll get all your questions answered by our friendly experts.
Simply call (201) 526-1200 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to book your demo today!