Agency Management System

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RUinsured
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by RUinsured » Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:55 am

You also have to question how much of AMS360 market share came from all their acquisitions over the years of other platforms they've purchased and forcing those agencies to "upgrade" to AMS360 and they discontinue their "old" system.

jbrown
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by jbrown » Sat Jul 15, 2017 12:20 pm

We've been with Applied Systems (TAM) for about 20 years. I'm reluctant to switch because we know the system so well. However, every time we complete an acquisition it is delayed, they never compensate with decreased fees, and, in general, Applied seems incompetent to translate even a very simple database from their own software! Help! Should I be looking at AMS? EPIC? Any thoughts? Thank you!

InsTech
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by InsTech » Sun Jul 16, 2017 7:34 am

pageltd wrote:
Thu Jul 13, 2017 9:52 am
InsTech wrote:
Thu Jul 13, 2017 9:28 am
BIG I conducts a study each year and summarizes insights important to independent agents. Attached is link to report excerpt. This may help narrow down management system providers to consider.

http://www.independentagent.com/Resourc ... mmary.aspx

Looking at how management system utilization is trending (up or down) can serve as guide to companies who are gaining in popularity (innovating) and delivering the goods (stuff works).
I totally disagree. The report won't tell a decision maker anything except what are the most popular programs. There is no insight here, it's all high-level. Insight is defined as "the capacity to gain an accurate and deep intuitive understanding of a person or thing". The broad stroke of this summary does not meet that definition, at all...it's just a bunch of numbers.
Felt information helpful as guide to what systems/providers an agency owner, looking to change, might consider. Sorry you didn't find it so. Obviously, the data won't tell someone what system to select.

pageltd
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by pageltd » Mon Jul 17, 2017 7:03 am

jbrown wrote:
Sat Jul 15, 2017 12:20 pm
We've been with Applied Systems (TAM) for about 20 years. I'm reluctant to switch because we know the system so well. However, every time we complete an acquisition it is delayed, they never compensate with decreased fees, and, in general, Applied seems incompetent to translate even a very simple database from their own software! Help! Should I be looking at AMS? EPIC? Any thoughts? Thank you!
Based on the reviews in this forum, neither would be an option, but I'm sure there are people that love both. Agency owners who claim that any of the major management system are going to be the solution are probably not using. In other words, they do not have to suffer through the deliberations of getting stuff done. At the end of the day, I would say that the AMS is part of the toolkit. I would not expect my AMS to do everything that they claim it can do, any more that a master craftsman would expect one tool to do everything. It's not an unfair comparison either. Think about all the things we have to do in a day. Managing policies, downloads, forms. Then there's marketing...whether email newsletters, social media, print newsletters, welcome kits. Add to that company interface, rating and gathering information for rating purposes. Now tell me that an AMS will be the magic elixir...that it will be able to handle and document all the things related to a particular customer/client/policy. Then think about a craftsman building a fine piece of furniture, or a remodeling contractor building a home, or even a painter painting a room. Each has a set of tools that they need to work with to get the job accomplished. No, they do not all fit together (or integrate). They are mostly separate tools, that are used for a very particular purpose. Sure there are all sorts of multi purpose tools...ones that you can put a different head on to meet the task...but they are no substitute for a high quality tool. We use many toold in the course of a dayto get our job done. No difference.
George Page
www.pageins.com

itc79
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by itc79 » Tue Jul 18, 2017 10:47 am

Stay away from Applied and Vertafore, this is time to get far away!

pageltd
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by pageltd » Tue Jul 18, 2017 11:04 am

I just hit the send button on an email to a sales rep from one of the lesser software vendors. Basically the problem with the AMS industry is a model where they sell you software, allow you to install on your server (consider me a renegade when I say it's the only way I would run any software), then they put into read only mode if you stop paying support fees. Bad business, period.
George Page
www.pageins.com

bposey@Nexsure
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by bposey@Nexsure » Tue Jul 25, 2017 6:55 am

Good morning, I wanted to take a moment and reply to some of the comments made about Nexsure. Nexsure is integrated with Microsoft Office products and tightly integrated with Office 365 exchange. As far as reporting, we provide standard reporting, data warehouse and we have a new reporting engine coming out 4th quarter this year. We also support Power BI and many other reporting platforms with our more advanced reporting offerings. If I can be of assistance, I would welcome a phone call at 714-213-9071 to discuss in more detail to assist anyone considering Nexsure, or that has general questions about what we offer in our platform to dismiss any doubt about the functionality of the Nexsure platform.

All the best,

Ben Posey
EVP Sales Nexsure
714-213-9071
ben.posey@xdti.com

resistencia13
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by resistencia13 » Mon Aug 07, 2017 10:29 am

Be very careful with the system you picked. I have switched twice in the past 6 years and unfortunately when demoing the systems look great and it appears they will save time and make the agency more efficient, but so far I keep going from a bad system to a worst one. I have been in Instar (best system I had, but it was killed in action by Vertafore), AMS360 and now in Nexsure. Would not recommend neither system unless you like to retyped information over and over again, and you hate your accounting department. I am currently shopping around for another system (again). I demo EZlink and Hawsoft a few years ago, I like them, but did not sign up due to their contacts management. I will be contacting them soon to see if they have change the contact management. Best advice I can give you whatever system you demo, make sure you demo multiple times, perform all your tasks such sending an email to a client, cancelling, reinstating, renewing policies, run reports, reconcile trust account, pay agents commission, pay carriers premium, etc but do not assume anything....perform all tasks and see everything. This was my mistake when switching to Nexsure. I made many assumptions, which I now regret. I focused on the one feature I wanted and neglected many other feature the system lacks. Another thing do not switch hoping features will be come available or enhancements will be made as those can take months or may never come true. Like George said, some users like their system, because they do not know any better, some do not care about efficiency because they are hourly/salaried employees, etc. You need to demo and come to your own conclusion about any system you are considering. Good luck! and let me know what you end up buying and if you still like it after a few months.



jbrown wrote:
Sat Jul 15, 2017 12:20 pm
We've been with Applied Systems (TAM) for about 20 years. I'm reluctant to switch because we know the system so well. However, every time we complete an acquisition it is delayed, they never compensate with decreased fees, and, in general, Applied seems incompetent to translate even a very simple database from their own software! Help! Should I be looking at AMS? EPIC? Any thoughts? Thank you!

Einstein
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by Einstein » Thu Aug 10, 2017 9:32 am

Here is what I do know, whatever you do I would stay away from Vertfore's AMS360. It used to be good until they changed it recently to their new "NextGen" version. What a mess. I have looked at moving to other systems but it is a daunting task so what I will do is purchase another agency that hopefully has a different system and then slowly transfer into that system and dump Vertafore.

resistencia13
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by resistencia13 » Thu Aug 10, 2017 10:39 am

I think we should help each other to avoid the mistakes of switching to a system based on a few demos....In my case I demo at least 3-4 times for 1-2 hours interval and still got it wrong. In my opinion to truly find out if a system works for your agency, you will have to use it for at least one day or more. This will be impossible as no system out there give you this type of access. So I suggest the following to agency owners actively looking to switch, but wish to test drive the system before buying. Get together with an agency that has the system you are planning switch to and spend a day working at that agency so you can truly see most of the functionality (good and bad) of the system. I know most agent will not want to allow another agent access to their clients or invest the time. However, the way I see it every time you switch management system you are allowing people access to your date and you are investing thousands of dollars in fees, time researching, learning the system, etc. I am willing to allow any agency owner this type of access, if they are willing to do the same for me and sign Non-competitive and non disclosure agreement. Any takers? I currently have access two AMS360 and Nexsure. I would love to test drive other systems and see if I can find one that works for my agency more specifically Hawksoft, EZlynks, Techcanary, Quomation, EPIC and any other software that offers the below features:

1. Ability to automatically add insured's name and policy number on the subject line when sending an email.
2. Ability to automatically add the insured location to email/letter when sending email to insured
3. Ability to search from addresses within the system. True location search based on accord forms not customer mailing address or any other method that require users double entries into the system.
4. Automatic Download invoicing for carriers that do not offer direct bill statement such Farmers of Salem, Amtrus, ETC.
5. Ability to be able to send emails from within the system with attachment from the PC without having to attach the document to the system and also to the email.
6. Ability to assign multiple commission rate to the same producer without having to do a manual entry each time.

The above are just a few features. Please note that the above features are not a wish list. These are feature some system have. Unfortunatly, I have not found one system that has them all. I do not know why as these are basic feature all agent shall have or/and would want in their system.

If there are any takers, please message me directly.

Farm Boy
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by Farm Boy » Tue Aug 22, 2017 11:35 am

Resistacia13, which mgmt. system do you prefer? AMS 360 or NEXSURE? I'm just NOT SURE which AMS I should move to from NEWTON... I need Strong Accounting, Producer Commission Reconciliation, and Reports, the rest of the "stuff" would be a bonus... Thanks :D

resistencia13
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by resistencia13 » Tue Aug 22, 2017 7:49 pm

I do not recommend neither system. However, if these were the only 2 systems available, I will pick AMS360 as it's the lesser of two evils. AMS360 accounting is less horrible than Nexsure as it requires less human input. All commission/invoices are created via download (Even when the company does not offer direct bill commission statement download). Nexsure only work with direct bill commission statement download. So all other companies need to be manually invoice and commission is a nightmare....My accounting department hates it as now they need to work twice as hard to pay producers, reconcile commissions and pay carriers. Reports are better in AMS360. As far as email features and letter format and location searching, AMS360 beats Nexsure hand down. AMS360 allows true location searching unlike Nexsure, which uses a redunat method that requires multiple manual steps as constant updates to location as it does not use the downloaded info from policies. Same with emails, Nexsure email delivery is mediocre at best, extremely limited. Email subject can only add the policy number, email content does not allow for locations to follow to letters, does not allow to send attachment unless they are in Nexsure (Which cause you to have to perform two steps to send an attachment via email.) Also AMS360 allows multiple screens so you can be in multiple customers at the same time or looking at a customer and a certificate creation. You can see policy number, client info, etc from almost anywhere in the system. In Nexsure you can only access one screen and due to the lack of information such policy number (Which can only be seen in a few screens), you have to keep bouncing from screens to obtain basic information.

Customer service is better at Nexsure than AMS360. However, there is only so much they can do due to the system limitation. Both system look great while demoing, but in real life they both are redundant and slow users down due to the amount of clicks to perform any task. Hope this helps....Check out Hawsoft and EZLinks, I heard good things and what little I saw of them I like it with the exception of the way contacts are handled. This is the one good feature Nexsure has that I was not able to find in any other system. Everything else comparable to AMS360 or inferior.

MrD
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by MrD » Wed Aug 23, 2017 12:11 pm

No system is perfect in all aspects. However, take a look at Strategic Insurance Software Partner XE. We recently moved from AMS Prime and looked at multiple systems, including but not limited to, AM360, Applied Epic, EZLynx, Nexsure and a host of others. We found SIS Partner XE to do what we needed at a very affordable price and their service has been excellent. They are very quick to respond. They do download in personal lines and commercial lines with 95% of our carriers; they integrate with Outlook,;they are cloud based; they have a full accounting system (insurance accounting and general ledger) which even I can use (I hate accounting) and they do direct bill commission download. It cost nothing but some time to look.

pageltd
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by pageltd » Wed Aug 23, 2017 12:20 pm

MrD wrote:
Wed Aug 23, 2017 12:11 pm
No system is perfect in all aspects. However, take a look at Strategic Insurance Software Partner XE. We recently moved from AMS Prime and looked at multiple systems, including but not limited to, AM360, Applied Epic, EZLynx, Nexsure and a host of others. We found SIS Partner XE to do what we needed at a very affordable price and their service has been excellent. They are very quick to respond. They do download in personal lines and commercial lines with 95% of our carriers; they integrate with Outlook,;they are cloud based; they have a full accounting system (insurance accounting and general ledger) which even I can use (I hate accounting) and they do direct bill commission download. It cost nothing but some time to look.
They have an excellent resource available on their website:
https://sisware.com/wp-content/uploads/ ... ftware.pdf
George Page
www.pageins.com

resistencia13
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Re: Agency Management System

Post by resistencia13 » Thu Aug 24, 2017 7:14 am

Mr.D,

Can you please provide the contact information for their sales team? I would like to find out more about the system and possible schedule a demo. Also how long have you been in the system? How is their invoicing/commission capabilities for download companies that do not offer commission statement download? How is the contact and email handling?



MrD wrote:
Wed Aug 23, 2017 12:11 pm
No system is perfect in all aspects. However, take a look at Strategic Insurance Software Partner XE. We recently moved from AMS Prime and looked at multiple systems, including but not limited to, AM360, Applied Epic, EZLynx, Nexsure and a host of others. We found SIS Partner XE to do what we needed at a very affordable price and their service has been excellent. They are very quick to respond. They do download in personal lines and commercial lines with 95% of our carriers; they integrate with Outlook,;they are cloud based; they have a full accounting system (insurance accounting and general ledger) which even I can use (I hate accounting) and they do direct bill commission download. It cost nothing but some time to look.

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