As a business owner, you have a lot on your plate. Between managing employees, ensuring your company is on track financially, and troubleshooting customer service issues, finding time to deal with insurance issues can be overwhelming.
If you want a new policy or are thinking about changing your current coverage, you may be tempted to go the online route. While this can be a more convenient approach, at first, when you start digging into the provisions to determine which protections and limits you need, working with an insurance agent may be a better option.
What Does an Insurance Agent Do?
You quickly learn that local business insurance agents possess expertise that runs deeper than the mechanics of how your coverage works. They have extensive training and related industry experience to help you create an effective and affordable risk management policy.
When you rely on an agent, you will receive industry-specific coverage recommendations that ensure any policy you buy provides adequate protection against inherent threats in your line of work. They will be one of your most reliable advisors and are always eager to help answer any questions you have about your protections.
Local agents tend to operate independently of larger carriers, so they have a larger selection of providers and coverage options.
Top 8 Benefits Your Insurance Agent Provides Business Owners
Now that you understand the role an insurance agent plays in managing insurance quotes, interpretation, and claims, check out how a relationship with a representative can benefit your policy experience:
1. Insurance Agents Truly Listen
One of the biggest complaints about large insurance corporations is that they don’t listen. You might be able to get a hold of their customer service department, but maybe you feel like your wants and needs are going ignored. When getting business insurance quotes, you don’t need a sales spiel.
Effective communication is an essential requirement for any insurance company, and working with an independent agent ensures you’re being heard. You don’t have time to sort out miscommunications between yourself and a claims adjuster. Insurance agents can ensure that your concerns are communicated clearly in these situations and can provide you with much-needed answers in terms you can understand.
2. You are Their Top Priority
Regardless if your insurance agent is independent or works for just one company, you will be their top priority. Instead of being stuck with a chatbot or impersonal online purchase experience, live representatives can better formulate the perfect business policy because they are personally engaged with you.
In situations where you need to file a claim, they can clearly explain what your options are instead of leaving you to interpret complicated provisions and legalese in your policy contract. In addition, they’ll listen and help you find quick solutions to ensure you get the best possible protection if you’re at fault or a customer brings a suit against your company. Essentially, they’re your rock during the claims process.
3. Honest Assessment of Your Risks
Another important reason to work with an insurance agent is their objective assessment of the liabilities your company and the industry you work in will face. In addition, these insurance professionals have a wealth of claim experience behind their recommendations.
You can also be assured of their training since their companies have licensing and certification requirements, including those required by government agencies. This translates into a truly beneficial relationship with your insurer that you can’t get on your own through a web portal.
4. Save Time and Let Them Do the Insurance Hunt
Because there are a variety of risks you’ll have to mitigate, you’ll likely need several different policies to achieve optimal protection. However, as your insurance agent, they can provide you with a one-stop shopping experience, so you won’t need to rely on multiple carriers to protect your business.
For example, they can put together a Business Owner’s Policy (BOP) that bundles three or more coverages at a lower rate. Typically, these packages will include general liability, E&O protection, and commercial property or auto. However, many representatives can further customize a BOP to include even more policies.
5. Empower Your HR Department
Human Resources is at ground zero when it comes to managing the liabilities and risks you face. From employee safety to hiring decisions, their role in protecting your company is impactful. For example, having a local insurance agent they can reach out to when there is a question about policy provisions, and exclusions is critical to their decision-making process when submitting claims or trying to stay ahead of safety trends.
You want your company to have the best foundation to support its future growth and success. Your HR team’s relationship with your insurer is tantamount to that goal.
6. Streamline Your Claim Process
Whether your building suffered roof damage during a severe thunderstorm or a customer sues you for defective work, your insurance agent can streamline the claims process. With their industry familiarity and extensive knowledge of your coverages, you don’t have to worry about reading through the fine print of your policy. Instead, they’ll be able to explain what your options are and what steps need to take place to minimize your liability and/or damages.
Their goal is to resolve your claim as quickly as possible so you can get back to what you do best: run your business. Their focus on efficiency will keep the process moving along, so you aren’t waiting for weeks on end to get an update.
7. Insurance Agents, Community Members Too
When you think about insurance representatives, you probably think about someone sitting behind a computer screen talking to customers all day. The reality is these professionals are members of your community. They could be your neighbor, a friend, or a PTO member at your child’s school.
Insurance agents aren’t just professionally experienced but have real-life ties to your daily situations as an individual and business owner. Therefore, you can trust that they relate to your insurance needs and goals on many levels and want to help you achieve them.
8. They’re Not Just Focused, They’re Motivated
Like you, insurance agents have bills to pay. And while it’s true that they’re focused on your company’s unique coverage needs, they’re also motivated because they don’t want to lose your patronage. Satisfied customers earn agents better commissions from repeat business, renewals, and upgraded insurance packages when a client’s company expands its services.
There’s nothing wrong with having an agent motivated by their earnings so long as they’re dedicated to providing you with stellar customer service and appropriate coverage options at a value you can appreciate. This is why representatives don’t try to oversell their policies because they know when it’s time to renew. You could easily go elsewhere. They’re all about creating an end-to-end experience you value and wouldn’t want to trust any insurance company to provide.
At the end of the day, when choosing an insurance policy, also take into account who you’re working with to manage your coverage. You need an agent to ensure that the protections you buy are sufficient for your liabilities. It’s true that you could figure this out on your own, but this requires significant amounts of research about your industry, current market trends, and business classification. An insurance representative already has this information available, saving you time and money by ensuring you have adequate provisions.
Finding the best insurance coverage for your company can be frustrating, leaving you worried about monthly premium costs, deductibles, and policy limits. If you want to be sure you get the best possible deal, reach out to an agent. They’re happy to offer you their professional advice based on years of first-hand experience helping thousands of other businesses protect their best interests.