Recently, we discussed some common challenges facing the insurance industry today.
However, there’s another equally important issue we haven’t yet addressed: Signatures.
When it comes to minimizing manual work and speeding up important processes, signatures are often overlooked. And while it may not be the first area that comes to mind, streamlining the signature collection process can in fact go a long way in securing new customers, reducing churn, and streamlining important workflows.
The key is to use electronic signatures. When compared to their pen-and-paper counterparts, eSignatures are faster, more efficient, and easier for customers to provide. Yet despite these advantages, many insurance agencies remain resistant — either because they’ve fallen prey to common misunderstandings about digitally signed documents or don’t realize just how easy they can be to implement.
If you’re trying to determine if online contract signing is the right move for your company, here are three quick questions to help you decide.
1. Do you want to improve customer service?
As we’ve mentioned before, customer churn is a big issue for insurance agencies today. Policyholders frequently leave companies because they feel businesses are wasting their time, and often get fed up with inferior self-support options.
Even worse: Among customers who cancelled policies, 38% said they would have stayed if they believed the insurer’s service would improve in the future.
Believe it or not, when a company fails to provide options for electronic signatures, these perceptions are magnified. After all, in the eyes of the empowered consumer, a lack of electronic signatures may be a red flag. If you’re not collecting digital signatures online in 2020, where else will they assume your technology is lagging?
Bottom line: Today’s insurance customers expect ease and convenience. Using eSignatures allows them to sign when and where they want on the device of their choosing, eliminating the need for printing or scanning. With electronic signature software, customers simply open an email or text from you to insert their signature before hitting “submit.”
2. Do you want to increase your agency’s productivity?
From securing new customers to streamlining important workflows, insurance companies have a lot to juggle. The more processes you can automate, the better positioned your agency will be to increase employee productivity and profitability.
Here again, eSignatures play a key role.
As any agent who’s been forced to hunt down a pen-and-paper signature knows, the process can easily span days, weeks, or, in some extreme cases, months. Electronic signature software helps ensure you can avoid these profit-eating time wasters.
In addition to being inefficient, the paper signing process can get costly, too. An eSignature solution reduces reliance on printer ink, couriers, and certified mail deliveries.
3. Do you want to increase document security?
What happens to signed documents after your agency receives them? Which folders and storage services are used to file them, and how are they secured? With so many of the biggest data breaches hitting insurance companies, these are important questions to answer.
Unfortunately, many of today’s signature collection processes still use methods that may not keep signed documents safe from exposure.
With electronic signature software, signed documents are automatically sent to high-tier data centers with SSL-encrypted endpoints and 256-bit AES encryption — security features designed to keep sensitive data safe at all times, whether documents are sitting in a database or are being shared via email.
Pro Tip: Look for an eSignature product that provides a complete audit trail and easily integrates with systems like Applied Epic, Vertafore, QQSolutions, GBS, Jenesis, and Xanatek.
If you answered yes to any of the questions above, it’s time to seriously consider adding an eSignature product at your insurance agency. Your clients and employees will both thank you for boosting efficiency, creating a better process, and eliminating paper.