Agency management as an independent insurance agency isn’t always easy. You don’t have the same support as a captive agent. So, what can you do to make agency management and growth easier? One option is joining an independent insurance agents network.

Before joining just any independent insurance agents network, there are four essential considerations to make whether you focus on commercial lines or personal lines:

  •       How an independent insurance agents network could help you and your agents grow
  •       How to determine if joining an insurance agency network is the right decision
  •       Asking other insurance agents for their suggestions
  •       Choosing a top tier independent insurance agents network

This blog post will explore those four points. Our goal is to help independent insurance agents make the best possible decision when they are thinking about joining a network.

How an Independent Insurance Agents Network Could Help Your Agency Grow

The right independent insurance agents network is more than just an extensive network of people. It is a professional organization with resources to meet your needs and professional staff who can answer your questions and help you.

There should be resources that:

  •       Help you understand how to grow and serve your book of business
  •       Help you prepare for and secure the carrier appointments you want
  •       Provide you with profit-sharing opportunities
  •       Help you better understand your management system
  •       Provide growth opportunities for you and your agents
  •       Provide continuing education opportunities for both you and your agents

All of these resources are included as part of your membership fee. As an independent insurance agent, these benefits are crucial. Some opportunities, like learning how to use your management system, growth and mentorship, and profit sharing are only found in captive agent scenarios. They are provided to captive agents from their captive insurance company.

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How to Decide if Joining an Insurance Agency Network Is Right for You

Joining an insurance agency network is a big decision. It’s also an investment. Although it does provide you with a large network of professionals and benefits, it is still a decision that requires some thought. So, how do you decide if joining an insurance agency network is right for you?

You must consider your needs and what you would like to accomplish in the short-term and long term. You should also consider what the independent insurance agency network offers and if those resources fit your agency.

SIAA offers several benefits for independent insurance agents. Some of our benefits include:

  •       Profit-sharing opportunities for national and regional levels
  •       Commissions paid directly to your agency from carriers
  •       Portfolio management service fee with a guaranteed quarterly bonus regardless of the loss ratio
  •       Discounts on agency technology
  •       Discounts on agency management systems
  •       The opportunity to earn direct carrier appointments
  •       Access to commercial lines and personal lines
  •       Weekly training opportunities
  •       Mentoring

When you look for an insurance agency network, look for one that can serve you both now and in the future. At SIAA, we are proud to work with both new and experienced independent insurance agencies and agents.

Ask Other Independent Insurance Agents for Their Suggestions

You can and should ask other independent insurance agents for their suggestions. Who do they use as an insurance agency network? More importantly, what do they like about it? What don’t they like about it?

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Choosing a Top Tier Independent Insurance Agency Network

Making sure that you choose a top-tier independent insurance agency network is another important concept.

  1.     Ask about portfolio management. For example, SIAA’s Portfolio Management Service Fee includes a guaranteed quarterly bonus for your independent insurance agency regardless of your loss ratio.
  2.     Ask whether there are fines or fees if you decide to leave the network. Sometimes you find out that the independent insurance agency network you thought might be a good fit for you doesn’t have the resources you need. Getting hit with fines or fees you didn’t expect can worsen the situation. It’s always best to find out what the fees are, if any, in advance.
  3.     Learn about the benefits you receive as a member. Before you join, learn what benefits you would receive. For example, members of SIAA can take advantage of our profit-sharing opportunities, discounts on agency management solutions, discounts on office solutions and technology, learn how to create a perpetuation plan, earn direct appointments with carriers, get access to weekly training and education, and have mentorship opportunities.

To learn more about SIAA and what we can do to help your agency grow, click here!