Leverage (verb) – use something to maximum advantage. This is why the Class and Carrier Reports were built, a means for an agent to maximize their advantage in a new business opportunity. On their own, just facts. It’s how you utilize the information that makes it valuable. No silver bullet, just a lot of lead. Below are three clever ways our agents are making the most of these reports:
I used the Class Report to explain to an underwriter my prospect’s class was in their underwriting guidelines and went from getting declined to placing coverage with the carrier. I pulled up the record, screenshotted the page, highlighted their name and sent it to her. We have a long relationship with the carrier but our underwriter was new to the region, so it was understandable enough. It’s also been helpful negotiating price with underwriters in general. When you have rate information available it’s easier to convey needs. Instead of a poker match, we have a discussion. Lay out the price scenarios, decide on what the underwriter wants and what we can have to secure the order.
Path of Least Resistance
We’re a Farmers agency, at any given time of year there are select classes of business underwriting really wants to go after so I’ll pull up those class reports to see who has the most market share and who’s losing more than winning and that is where I’ll have my team focus. I make all the searches and assign them so I know there is no overlap and it’s easy to track.
If there was a rate increase from last year or the incumbent’s LCM is higher than the average I see on the Class Report, I’ll start the conversation there and keep it simple. I also use the underwriting company breakdown on the Carrier Report to illustrate rate differences to the prospect.
It depends on the carrier and account size but the situations are similar. There is some number of low, middle and high tiers. I copy them into my spreadsheet, enter $100k in payroll and I have a summary comparison to my carriers. It’s also helpful when I can’t get around a gatekeeper, beats a brochure.
It has really helped me get into better opportunities because they’re usually not interested at first, but if I can bring up underwriting company rate variance and the impact on cost, they start listening and actually asking questions. With my spreadsheet I can speak with ballpark numbers and I think it adds credibility. From here it becomes a conversation. I usually have approximate payroll at this point so I’ll confirm some info on the other lines, and we’re scheduling a coverage review. More often than not it is just me versus the incumbent, and they don’t know they’re playing.