The SmartCompliance Blog welcomes guest contributor Ashley Hunter, President of HM Risk Group. Prior to heading HM Risk Group, Ashley worked in various claims management positions, for carriers such as State Farm Insurance Companies and Chartis Insurance Companies. She has managed worldwide developments in excess of $83 million US dollars.
Ashley holds the CRIS designation (Construction Risk Insurance Specialist) and the AIC designation (Associate in Claims). Ashley has a BM in Music Theory and Composition from Centenary College of Louisiana and a MBA in Management from Texas A&M University. She is also an accomplished violinist.
In the last ten years, technology has made a huge impact on the way we conduct business in the insurance industry. It is important that insurance professionals stay abreast of these current technological trends, as times change. I could not imagine conducting business on a global scale without my top 7 technology winners.
1) Electronic Signature Software and Smartphone Apps
Don’t you hate it when you find yourself at a client meeting, needing a signature and you haven’t printed the application? With Zosh, there is no need to worry. You can get an electronic signature that is accepted by most global insurers.
2) QR Codes and Online Business Cards
Out of business cards but you have a tech savvy client or colleague? Email your QR Code to your client. It is a bar code that will give the end-user valuable contact information. For the less tech savvy individual try emailing your online business card.
3) Online Storage Applications
Have you ever needed a word document on your smartphone, but it happens to be on your computer? There are online storage programs that allow you to sync documents between your computer and smartphone. This will alleviate the stress of not having important documents at your fingertips at all times.
4) Insurance and Risk Management Reference Tools
Need to kill time between appointments? Why not check these awesome web apps and mobile sites for insurance and risk management professionals. It is a great way to keep up with the industry trends without having to power up your computer.
5) Web-Based Policy Documentation Software
I love solutions such as SmartCompliance’s policy management and documentation software. It not only allows the broker to maintain impeccable documentation, but it also provides up-to-date client information via a web-based browser. This type of software allows brokers to have a competitive edge over “old school” brokers.
6) Social Media and Personal Branding
What would a blog post about technology be without some mention of social media? If used correctly, social media can be a valuable tool to develop and maintain relationships. I always advise that insurance professionals start slow with social media until they have figured out their “voice.” Social media is not only a way to promote your business, but it is a great way to show your expertise in insurance and risk management. Below are some great ways to start your social media campaign:
Twitter 140 characters or less to prove you are the expert.
LinkedIn It is the “business” Facebook.
Facebook A great way to promote your business to family and friends.
YouTube Allows you to post videos of the services you offer.
Vator.tv This site allows you to share your services and find potential partners for collaborations.
Google Profiles This is a no-brainer, all things Google equal a greater Internet presence.
7) Visual Voicemail
It never fails, the moment I begin a meeting, my cell phone rings with a call from an important contact. I love being able to “read” my voicemail messages that I receive on my cell phone. It allows me to discern if the call needs my immediate attention or if I can wait for a later time in the day. I have found that web-based programs along with a smart phone app are easier to maneuver.
The way business is being conducted is changing globally. These smart phone apps and web-based software are not only user friendly, but economical.