In my last installment of "Homegrown Management System" I wanted to talk about the main reason I would build my own management system from scratch. Ive touched on one reason a bit and that is "customization". Have you ever thought, "Wouldn't it be nice if my AMS did this?". Are you one of those outspoken customers who has actually shown up at a user group or called your AMS's sales manager to request a feature? If you are you will find that they will agree with you but implementation is the hard part. If your idea is deemed useful enough to put into a release it may take upwards of a year. Being useful as a feature often means useful for the majority of their clients. If they are a good technology company they will try to focus on their "power-users" and implement ideas by those users on a regular basis. I never have to beg for a feature. Thats one of the two major reasons I spent the hours coding this thing.
The other reason I built my system was "Sales". Most management systems are "client management" systems. The Prospect is a second class citizen. Some will agree with that philosophy but turning prospects into clients is what we do. Thats why we are called "Producers". Im not saying that clients should be the second class citizen - far from it. I am saying they should be closer to equal within the management system.
If you really think about it Sales techniques are ever changing. Sales techniques must be tested and changed. Servicing techniques generally remain consistent. Thats not to say we service in the same way we did in 1988 but for the most part we rely on that consistency to measure results and to provide our clients stability. Sales techniques on the other hand - we must always be a/b testing and experimenting with. A proper management system should recognize this need.
The other side of the coin is the Carriers technology. Carriers should be more concerned with Sales Technology. Many of them delete quotes after 60 days. Are sales relationships built in one quote? Some accounts take years to develop into a policy. A balance should be struck between data security and sales potential.
It was because of these two deficiencies that I built my system. Ever changing and adaptable it remains are most powerful change at staying competitive.