Being a sales professional is no longer enough. For brokers to survive, they need to make their value manifest — and one way of doing that is through technology, said Alan Katz, a former National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU) president, during a session at NAHU’s annual conference at the end of June.
Brian Kalish’s recent article in Employee Benefit Adviser reported on Katz’ presentation. According to Katz, there has been an explosion in the last few years of tech startups serving the benefits industry. These companies, such as Zenefits and Namely, are not unfair competition or “even all that innovative,” said Katz, principal at Los Angeles-based consultancy The Alan Katz Group. Rather, they created an unlevel playing field for advisers. According to the article, Katz says customers need to acknowledge the value that brokers are bringing and the days of free service are over.
Successful brokers leverage technology to amplify high-touch value to better service clients, fend off competitors and demonstrate their value. Clients are demanding technology because employers are increasingly doing business online.