How to bring wholesale insurance into the 21st century
By Nyles Oppenheimer, VP Strategy and Partnerships
The job of the wholesale insurance broker has become increasingly challenging in recent years. With the ongoing consolidation squeeze continuing to transform the industry, many wholesalers have been left with few options for survival. Seeing that retail brokers are increasingly cutting the number of wholesalers they deal with, the solution for some has been to merge with larger wholesale agencies.
For others, who wish to maintain their independence, the challenge now stands to maintain and capture the interest of retail insurance brokers in an increasingly complex and competitive wholesale channel.
For years, retail insurance brokers have relied upon the wholesale channel as a critical source of placements. And while wholesale remains of significant importance to retail brokers, increasingly, they have become hyper-selective in the number of wholesalers they work with in an effort to increase efficiencies and their bottom line.
So, what exactly are retail brokers looking for in their wholesalers today? In a nutshell, they’re looking for savvy partners who can enable fast solutions. And in today’s hyper-competitive and speed driven world, technology is one of the surest ways to meet the needs of the retail broker.
In this post, we’ll take a look at why technology is now a key differentiator for wholesale brokers looking to attract and retain relationships with retail insurance brokers.
Digital Is Now Essential to the Wholesale-Retail Relationship
If 2020 showed us anything, it is that digital transformation is no longer a nice-to-have, it’s essential to business survival. As the world went into isolation virtually overnight, businesses everywhere were suddenly forced to rapidly adopt digital practices in order to stay afloat. This meant streamlining internal practices in order to keep teams connected and adopting new technologies to keep customers well served.
And while the world is slowly nudging towards a post-Covid era, the digital expectations forged last year will continue to have lasting and dramatic impact on business everywhere. In fact, according to Gartner, some 63% of businesses are now ramping up their digital transformation budgets as a result of Covid. Going forward, customers will continue to expect businesses to provide them digital backed service. And the same applies to the retail-wholesale insurance relationship.
With their competition at an all time high and margins razor thin, retail brokers are now looking to align with wholesalers that can nimbly support their race to do business with greater speed and accuracy than ever before, without compromising outcomes for their clients.
And to supply that service, wholesalers who haven’t yet taken the leap, need to begin their digital transformation in earnest this year. By doing so, wholesalers can expect to significantly elevate the quality of experiences they provide to their retail brokers and score a key differentiation point in the age of consolidation.
Relay Platform – Your Path to Digital Transformation
As the first commercial insurance and reinsurance SaaS solution built entirely in the cloud, Relay Platform is designed to help wholesale and retail brokers transact, from inception to bind, with greater efficiency and accuracy.
Knowing that insurance moves fast and the stakes are higher than ever for wholesalers and retailers alike, we designed our solution to simplify the placement process through leading-edge instant quotes and help brokers achieve higher close rates through better and faster proposals.
With our platform on hand, your team will be able to provide retail brokers with the sort of 21st century sophistication that they need to remain competitive. Better yet, by advancing your technology, you too will become more competitive and achieve an edge up on the consolidation squeeze.
Ready to learn more about how Relay’s solution can help your wholesale business increase its competitiveness in the 21st century? Contact us at [email protected] to book your demo today.
About the Author
Nyles Oppenheimer, VP Strategy and Partnerships
Nyles has spent 14 years in the insurance industry with MetLife, Marsh, and most recently Aon. Before joining Relay, his most recent experience was as Director in Aon’s strategy consulting operation where he worked predominantly with Insurance and Reinsurance carriers to help them execute on their business objectives. This wealth of experience has afforded him a unique perspective on the insurance value chain that he is now bringing to bear in the insurtech space.