This post tries to give a short introduction to most of the core features inside an Agency Management System. It is compiled based on our experience of developing multiple AMS. Check our parent company Webner’s website https://webnersolutions.com/ to learn more about us or write to us at our development email id email@example.com in case you need help with development or enhancement of your own AMS. Also check our free Web based AL3 viewer at https://products.winsurtech.com/).
As you will read below AMS can be a very vast system as well and can take long time to develop or if you pick some specific key modules for your agency based on your need, we can give you a fixed estimate of time and price. Estimate will depend on what all you need in your system.
1. Basic P & C Policy Administration – This includes creation of all the entities like Policy, Insured, Vehicle, Driver, Coverage etc and then bind them together. Create a user interface on top of them to view and edit this data. Usually the data comes from AL3 files but still you need screens to view and edit data. So this is the foundation, basic data model to provide the base for development of other features on top of it.
2. Policy downloads – If you get AL3 files from your carrier, IVANS or EBix we can embed our own AL3 parser into your system to convert AL3 to JSON and then store JSON into your AMS (https://products.winsurtech.com/). The other option is you need to use ACORD’s AL3 to ACORD eLabels mapping api but they charge per conversion. IVANS also has an AL3 to XML converter but they will be very expensive probably. You can find out more about it. There is an initial download of all the past transactions which is huge and takes time for one time import into your AMS. From next time a daily AL3 policy download file is provided with daily transactions by your carrier. System tries to match downloaded policy transactions to corresponding policy records based on policy number, name, address etc. If it fails to do that for a transaction, this entry is made available on a policy reconcile screen that needs manual intervention to resolve to the correct match.
3. Commission Downloads – If you receive AL3 files from your carrier, IVANS or EBix for this as well our AL3 parser can convert this data into JSON and put the entries into your system. These are monthly downloads while Policy downloads are daily downloads generally. Commission can be reconciled with calculated values to find mismatches, corresponding accounting entries can be made at the time of download.
4. ACORD Forms – This module will allow you to click a button on the Policy or Account record in your AMS, select the ACORD form number to be populated and system will automatically fill data inside the PDF. This module gives you a user interface for you to map your policy fields one time to ACORD form fields and once done any number of forms can be populated. Second part of this module is to accept modified ACORD pdf back and make changes into AMS using the modified data in the form. This can also be done.
5. Commission Split Calculation – Some of our clients also ask for commission split calculation for producers based on split percentage defined for agency, producer, producer manager etc on per policy or system level, then post corresponding entries into the basic accounting system. This module can be developed and will also need basic accounting system developed.
6. CRM – You need to manage your customers and leads inside the system, and you need to bind them to your staff members, products and regions. You may also like to store leads in AMS from your website or other sources and keep them inside your AMS. Later on when they have policies they become Accounts and Contacts (insured) and data is moved into corresponding objects. Work flow rules to keep everyone notified are needed, which the AMS will allow to configure.
7. Community Portal (Portal for the Insureds) – Some Insurance AMS have this feature for Insureds to login, check their policies, view invoices, make online payments, view historical payments, policy history, submit cases if they need changes, file claims etc and then keep track of the status of everything here.
8. Policy History, Attachments, Renewals, Notifications, Policy Reconcile, Commission Reconcile and other Misc tasks – Inside your AMS you would like to keep history of the policy records when policies get renewed, endorsed or cancelled etc. You would like to see the entire lifecycle of the policy with complete data at each stage. You would also like that corresponding ACORD or carrier forms remain attached to the policy and customer records, you will also like to send notifications to your staff when policy renewal is due, policy reconcile screen for manually matching a policy to correct account/policy if AL3 record has incomplete information & policy cannot be matched, manually reconciling/correcting commission entries downloaded from AL3 etc. You may also like to send well formatted HTML emails to your leads and contacts based on some criteria using custom layouts. Most of these features become a part of the AMS at some stage.
9. Insurance/Financial Accounting – You may like to use a system like QuickBooks or Accounting Seed or some AMS have complete accounting suite built inside them that includes Managing Entities (Customers, Accounts, Brokers, Carriers, Vendors, Employees and more), Policy payments (premium, installments, down payment, commission), agency fee, consultation fee, manager commission, producer commission (Agency and Direct billing), manage Receivables (Invoices, Credits, Payment receipts, Deposits), manage Payable (Expenses, Payments, Recurring expenses, Credits, Checks, Carrier Payable, Producer Payable), Journal Entries, Bank Reconciliation, General Ledger (Income statement, Balance sheet, Cash flow, Trial balance, Transaction detail) and Reports (Receivable report, Invoice details, Payments received, Payable report, Payments made, Reconciliation)
10. Proposal Management System – We have created our own proposal management https://www.proposalways.com/ but we can create one of your own if you want. PMS allows you to create graphically rich proposals with dynamic data from your AMS embedded inside the proposal, send proposals online to your contacts, get online acceptance with eSignatures and online payments as well. PMS allows to save proposal templates and quickly assemble a proposal from a template when a new one is to be sent.
11. Custom Quoting Engine and Rater integration – You can have Quote forms created inside your AMS to record all the different fields relevant to Personal lines of business you work with to calculate premium and other charges for your client and prepare the Quote in PDF format to send to the customer. Rater integration with one to one carrier can be done or through PL Rater or a similar rater partial integration can be done to collect premium offers from various carriers. You can also gather rates manually from carrier websites and type in the figures in your own AMS’s quote engine and then send the quote to your client.
PL Rating integration needs user to come on to the PLR platform and then complete the quote there. It also needs user to come onto PLR to bind the quote to the carrier. So no clearly decoupled API integration so far from PLR. I think ITC supports better Rater API integration – https://www.getitc.com/
We asked some question from ITC and this is what they say:
1- will we be able to quote from our AMS? yes
2- will we be able to save pricing from rater in our AMS ? -yes
3- will we be able to bridge from our AMS to Carrier’s website to complete sale? – possibly
4- will we be able to use the api from our web/salesforce based AMS? – yes
12. Claims Management – Of course claims management can be added to the list. Automating claim filing process, form filling for Claims inside the AMS along with relevant ACORD forms, supplementary information, image attachments etc (and also through customer portal), integration with the carriers to send claims data to them, downloading and recording claim status and sending notifications to agency staff and insured become a part of AMS.
Hope above list helps you. Once again check our website https://winsurtech.com/ to learn more about us or write to us at our development email id firstname.lastname@example.org in case you need help with development or enhancement of your own AMS. Also check our free Web based AL3 viewer at https://products.winsurtech.com/ and Our Proposal Management System (https://www.proposalways.com/).