Why technology is making insurance brokers more valuable than ever

By Dale Smith, CEO JAVLN.

The recent federal budget probably left many small businesses across Australia banging their collective heads against a brick wall.

While a few tweaks to the tax system and handouts for energy bills may help to a point, Australia’s backbone — small businesses — would’ve been hoping for a bit more support.

And the reasons why are pretty obvious. With 70% of Aussies being affected by at least one natural disaster in 2022, and now a stubbornly high inflation rate, Australians and small businesses are finding things difficult. To paint an even bleaker picture, the National Small Business Ombudsman revealed that 43% of SMEs are not making a profit, the worst rate since 2012.

Given the last few years, business resilience and saving money has never been more important. While there are plenty of advice-type articles out there on how to do both of those things, how to go about obtaining insurance hasn’t really been covered. In such a seemingly dire climate, insurance is critical. So, how do you make sure you have the right cover for your business?

Insurance brokers are a saving grace. They’re there to help you save money and become more resilient at the same time. Being able to connect small businesses with insurance cover, brokers act as a trustworthy guide for you to be protected in the event of an emergency.

It would seem that most small business owners already understand this, as insurance brokers are seeing a significant spike in demand. As a result, their work-juggling skills are being put to the test. The good news is that brokers are rising to the challenge. Vero’s SME Insurance Index 2024 report has revealed that client satisfaction with insurance brokers is at an all-time high, with 87% of customers giving their broker at least an eight out of ten. This is a major leap from last year’s 78%.

If you look a little deeper, the whole insurance broking industry is at the start of a major change. Brokers are learning new ways to be productive and tackle complex risk and regulation hurdles — all in the name of giving the highest possible service to clients. And while you won’t have seen much change from the outside recently, here’s what’s happening on the inside…

A boost to productivity

Many brokers are going through a major productivity reshape right now. Traditionally, brokers spend roughly half of their time dealing with customers and sourcing policy wording terms, while the remaining half of their time goes towards managing important compliance requirements and making sure systems were up to date with the client’s latest information.

Now, however, with the demand for brokers rising, we’re seeing the start of real change in the entire broking industry, where firms are adapting impressively while keeping both eyes firmly on the best possible service. For the most forward-thinking of brokers, adapting has meant using innovative technology to free them up from non-client-facing tasks.

Let’s look at how tech helps with compliance, for example. Traditionally, brokers would manually manage compliance at each step of the process when obtaining insurance policies for their customers. It required incredible attention to detail. But higher demand has forced a change here. Modern technology is now being increasingly used by brokers to take care of compliance quickly and efficiently. So brokers can spend more of their valuable time with their clients.

Admin is another area where technology is helping. Technology exists to ensure that brokers no longer have to spend time making sure multiple systems are up to date with the right client and policy information. For these forward-thinking insurance brokers, modern technology is unifying everything they need to know about a client and their needs in one system, flagging potential insurance needs proactively.

Brokering change

Broking has always been a relatively conservative, risk-averse industry. That makes sense since the industry is filled with risk experts. But it’s taken a while to get on board with modern technology compared to other industries. Until recently, the technology industry had failed to demonstrate how it adds value to brokers. If it can’t help brokers become better at their jobs, why should any firm invest in it?

That’s a big reason why I founded JAVLN. As a business owner, I got tired of providing the same kind of data year after year to my broker, and thought there had to be a better way! As I dug deeper, I discovered brokers were working with outdated and clunky technology. So, I founded JAVLN to help make buying insurance from brokers easier. Now, modern cloud technology like ours is serving the people, rather than the other way around.

Because at the end of the day, I’m passionate about helping small businesses get what they need to reduce risk.

This article was originally published on Dynamics Business.

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