Headquarters: Indianapolis, IN
Years as an Indio Customer
The need to improve operational efficiency
Gregory & Appel Insurance found that inefficient processes was costing them valuable time and energy — time and energy that could be spent investing in clients and increasing revenue. According to Christina Kelley, COO, “The more task-driven, lower-level administrative activities that staff have to do, the less delightful the client experience on the other end.”
Renewals were also confusing for both account managers and clients. For example, G&A’s gold standard renewal timeline starts 120 days out from the renewal deadline. For one client, however, the advisory had to start the process six months out because it took longer to get all of their information together. “Renewals are frustrating from a client perspective, and I think even more so on the commercial side than it is on the personal lines side, because of the multiple pages that you have to complete and the pieces of information you’re required to recall,” Kelley says. Clients had questions but often didn’t know where to start and who to call. According to Kelley, “As an account manager, you get to a certain point where it’s just tedious constantly answering questions about applications and forms. And if that frustration comes through on a phone call with a client, that negative impression stays forever.”
In addition, account managers were dealing with redundant data entry, which increased the chance of errors and omissions when account managers keyed this information into the system. If any info was input incorrectly and the account manager had to admit to the client that they had made a mistake, it further decreased the trust level with the client and opened up room for liability.
These operational inefficiencies hindered account managers’ ability to advise and delight the client. Kelley knew these inefficiencies could be reduced or eliminated with the right technology in place.
We have one client that we typically start the renewal process six months out because it takes a very long time for them to get their information together. With Indio, we deliberately started the process three months out and we were able to cut the client’s renewal process time in half.
An online application to increase efficiency and client satisfaction
G&A chose Indio to combat operational inefficiencies with technology. Since implementation, the reduction in internal operational inefficiencies has significantly improved the application and renewal process. Account managers now have more time to spend on client needs outside of administrative tasks. Client satisfaction has increased as a result.
Online portal enables account managers to spend more time advising clients
The traditional application and renewal process involves a flood of paper documents that an account manager has to sort through, organize and scan. Indio offers an online portal that eliminates this problem. Instead of attaching multiple scanned documents to an email, account managers can send clients one link that directs them to smart forms within the G&A branded online portal. Common answers such as names are autopopulated across the smart forms and applications, so account managers no longer waste time deciphering a client’s handwriting or making mistakes rekeying information. Account managers can now focus their efforts on actual client needs.
In addition, account managers can check within the portal to see, in real time, how much of an application an insured has completed. This eliminates unnecessary effort spent sending emails to clients asking their status in the application process. Account managers are also automatically notified about client questions within the portal and can respond accordingly, which is easier than trying to track and sort through multiple questions via email. And, if a client has yet to fill out an application, an account manager can simply send automated reminders through the Indio portal. Reminders are sent at an increasing cadence as the application deadline draws closer. This is a major benefit for G&A account managers, as they formerly had to monitor deadlines and manually send reminder emails to clients. It was a painstaking and frustrating process, especially when clients failed to complete applications on time. The Indio platform now takes care of both deadlines and deadline communication, saving account managers valuable time and energy that can be spent advising clients.
G&A’s former renewal process required the insured to make changes to an application or schedule workbook data and then email everything back to the account manager. It was a nightmare for the account manager who had to painstakingly compare the data against the previous year’s information, cell by cell, looking for changes and making annotations. It also presented E&O exposure. With Indio’s Schedule Workbooks, G&A account managers now can upload spreadsheets straight into Indio’s online portal and send a link to clients. Their clients can then make all changes to workbook data online rather than on a static file saved to a hard drive. Changes are easy for account managers to review as they are presented in a color-coded, itemized list. Timestamps also show when and who made changes to the workbook. It eliminates frustrating comparison work and decreases the chance of costly mistakes.
Indio’s smart forms give G&A account managers the option to mark the questions that the insured needs to fill out as “required.” The insured cannot submit their application until all required questions are complete — no guesswork involved. If the form needs more than one person’s help, account managers simply assign the smart form section to another team member who can complete the relevant sections simultaneously. The ability for account managers to require sections of an application or assigning specific applications to different members of the same company has been a game-changer for G&A. For example, one client’s renewal period process used to begin six months in advance to meet the May 1 deadline but with Indio, the renewal process time was cut in half.
All of the above Indio features create additional time for account managers to become risk managers instead of just account and paper managers. According to Kelley, the results of using Indio have been clearly visible. “I have staff that has said, ‘Now that I understand where we’re going with this, my clients are excited. They don’t ever want to see another paper form. The client reaction is ‘Now that we have it, we’re not going back."
Operational inefficiencies waste valuable time — time that G&A account managers now get back through the use of Indio technology. Whether during a regular application process or renewal period, account managers are better equipped to have important conversations with their clients about risk, rather than answering basic questions about form sections. “I can tell you that every opportunity we get to talk to our peers or partners, we do because we know the struggle that account managers have getting renewal cycles and paper cycles under control,” Kelley says. “Indio has something really special.”
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