As you prepare for insurance renewal meetings with your clients heading into a new policy year, it’s important to acknowledge both the opportunities and challenges 2022 may bring—for every customer, in every industry sector. Foresight’s Business Development leadership team has compiled their top three tips to help you have productive and effective insurance renewal discussions with your customers as they engage in their annual insurance and risk management planning.
Hold Renewal Discussions—Plural!—Early and Often
Michael Bibeau, Regional Vice President of Business Development, stressed that the best brokers he has worked with throughout his career across insurance carriers are the ones who view renewal planning as a continuous conversation. “Consistent follow-up throughout the year is key, and being proactive in initiating discussions rather than being reactive,” he said. He suggests brokers set up quarterly touchpoints with clients, and his suggested approach? “Preferably in person.” Christine Garza, Regional VP of Business Development, agreed. “Smooth client renewals are ensured by an early and productive start to the conversation!” An early start, she says, is a great way to “get ahead of other brokers coming in from the side.” When you begin conversations with underwriting ahead of time, “you ensure there will be no surprises from the carrier.”
Consider What COVID-19 May Have Changed
From staffing levels to supply shortages to converting brick and mortar real estate to remote workplaces—nearly every business across America has experienced some disruption since COVID-19 emerged onto the scene two full years ago. It’s important to account for these changes from an underwriting standpoint, as this can dramatically impact your client’s rate. But it’s also critical to engage the insurance carriers’ risk management and claims representatives in this discussion as well, so you and your client are well-versed in what (if any) role the insurer can play in the event of a COVID outbreak or incident at your client’s business. Perhaps your clients’ needs concerning COVID-19 and pandemic risk management have changed drastically from 2021 to 2022, or maybe they conduct business in a state with stringent OSHA mandates. You’ll want to be sure you are helping them consider their needs and options carefully as COVID-19 continues to be an unfortunate question mark for American businesses.
Take the Full Landscape of Carriers into Account
It can feel like second nature for clients to get comfortable with a carrier or simply to perceive change as overly complex. But it’s important as their navigator through the risk placement process that you help keep them on their toes by knowing what advantages there may be to switching to a carrier whose value proposition is a better fit for their business. Perhaps switching from a generalist to a specialist carrier is a solid move in the current environment. Or maybe there’s something brand new that could surprise you both.
Seven years in, insurtech is more than just a buzzword or a bubble. Foresight’s Head of Distribution Matt Keeping recently shared of his own journey from the legacy insurance world to insurtech: “It is energizing and awe-inspiring what is possible when you remove some of the barriers to success that legacy systems and processes present. True client centricity is possible when each relationship and account can be evaluated and attended to with creativity, prompt responsiveness, and a sense of entrepreneurship.”
Keep the Dialogue Going
Bibeau, Garza, and Keeping agree that the best way to approach every insurance renewal is to stay engaged with all parties involved, all year-round. Your underwriters and carriers will appreciate it as much as your clients will!