Why Free ACORD Forms Aren’t Good For Your Business

Forms are the connective tissue of the insurance business. You can’t take on someone’s risk until they’ve made the decision to sign on the dotted line. And when it’s time to sign, many independent agencies turn to ACORD forms to save money. There are hundreds of free forms available to download and print, but I want you to ask yourself a tough question: Will my business be able to remain competitive with agencies that adopt paperless agency management systems?

Maybe the answer this year is yes. Maybe even for the next 3 years. But in 5 years? 10?

If you run a small insurance agency, you also know that new business is the lifeblood of your agency. Retention is important, but there always needs to be a constant stream of new business development. And if your goal is to keep your business around for the next 10 years, or for your kids, it’s time to start considering the impact of your business operations on your customers’ experience. Millennials are now officially the largest segment of the population, and as digital natives, they’re setting the tone when it comes to expectations.

It’s a no brainer. An agency management system is always going to be a better alternative. It saves you time, increases accuracy, and gives you the freedom to keep tabs on your business, even when you’re away from the office.

Sound too good to be true? Keep reading.

Stop Wasting Time

Insurance is a highly regulated industry that requires records and forms for everything. In fact, I’m sure there are a few of you who feel like ACORD forms are the bane of your existence, repeating the same process over and over – printing them out, scanning them, emailing them to customers, following up with customers. It can go on and on.

Now let me paint a different picture. You’re on the beach in Hawaii. You get an email from a client on your cell phone. You lift your drink to your lips as you simultaneously log in to your agency management system’s app and send your client a new form electronically. They sign it electronically and send it back to your system which automatically updates the record – no loose papers, nothing gets lost.

Again, feel free to continue printing out forms, but I’d rather be at the beach.

Managing a customer relationship with software makes collaboration easy. You no longer need to meet with staff to keep them in the loop. All client data is included in the customer profile, including policy documents and marketing information.

Less E&O Risk

When you download ACORD forms, they have to be filled in by hand. Ouch. I’m willing to bet that you can type a lot faster than you can write.

Not to mention, every time data has to be transferred from the form there’s a risk for errors, and we both know there is no room for error in insurance. One misplaced number or a single missed entry can have disastrous consequences.

QQCatalyst allows you to map policy information to ACORD forms that are integrated into the system, eliminating the need for multiple points of entry.

QQCatalyst eliminates common data entry problems and gives you the ability to store documents with customer data. This makes it easy to reference important information needed to process a policy.

Let’s go back to our long-term vision. How realistic is it to believe that you or someone at your office won’t make a mistake in the next 10 years if they have to keep filling out forms by hand. Do the right thing and invest in technology that is going to protect your team and have a compounding ROI.

There is no return on investment for paper.

Available Anywhere

Most agency management software systems require you to download and install software, but today’s technology allows applications to run online.

When you download free ACORD forms, they reside only on the computer from which you download them. You can upload them to a cloud-based service, but they still need to be printed and filled out by hand, making it very inefficient.

QQCatalyst harnesses the power of the cloud to provide a software package that can be accessed anywhere. Because it’s completely web-based, small to mid-sized P&L agencies can do business wherever, on any type of system.

This flexibility allows you to work with customers without being at the office. Responsiveness is at the heart of customer service, and the ability to pull up a claim on your smartphone means questions are answered quickly. By staying responsive to your customers, it will be easier to compete with large agencies with 24-hour availability and more resources.

Wrapping It Up

Today’s marketplace is more competitive than ever. According to global consulting firm Accenture, 47% of insurance customers want more digital interaction and only 15% are satisfied with their experience in this area with their current carrier.

Using an agency management system like QQCatalyst not only makes it easier for you to manage your business, but also provides current and potential customers with the experience they’re looking for.

So stop downloading those free forms and make the switch to technology that satisfies both you and your clients.

Learn more about what QQ Catalyst can do for you.