Market Connectivity: Takeaways from the 2020 Vertafore Connectivity Forum


By Dave Acker, VP of Product Management

When it comes to market connectivity, it takes two to tango. Both agents and carriers are responsible for fostering a mutually beneficial relationship to create stronger partnerships and a distinct customer experience. And at Vertafore, it’s our job to facilitate this connection. For over fifteen years, the Vertafore Connectivity Forum (VCF) has brought forward-thinking brokers and carriers together to share their perspective on current connectivity challenges, where they are investing, and the future of connectivity for our industry.  

This year’s VCF, featured during our first-ever Summer of Accelerate Carrier Week, was certainly one for the books. And, I had the honor of moderating this year’s panel of esteemed industry professionals: 

  • Jackie Gabriele, director of Partner Services & Integration at Travelers 
  • Michael Lebor, global head of Digital Distribution & Innovation at AmTrust Financial 
  • Jim Rogers, AVP of Sales & Distribution Technology Strategy at The Hartford 
  • Jim Dahoney, SVP & CIO at Marshall & Sterling 
  • Mike Foy, agency principal at Foy Insurance.  

If you couldn’t join us for the live virtual session, you can view the entire session on our Carrier Week site. Simply login or register for on-demand access to the VCF recording and other great sessions. For now, here are my top three takeaways from VCF. 

1. Commercial lines submissions have come a long way, but there’s still work to be done  

The submissions process has long haunted the insurance industry. Although it seems like almost every aspect of our lives is digital and instantaneous, much of the commercial submissions process is painstakingly manual, and data entry and rekeying create massive inefficiencies for all players involved. With Commercial Submissions, powered by Vertafore, we’re revolutionizing the way brokers interact with their carrier partners. Agencies can submit to multiple carriers at once, compare quotes in seconds, and bind instantly – all without ever leaving the AMS. There’s still much work to be done, but we’re closer than ever before. 

2. When it comes to carrier credentialing, technology solutions are your friend  

For an agent, managing and remembering individual login credentials to each of their carrier websites can be a bit of a hassle. Solutions like SignOn Once by the non-profit organization ID Federation are on the front lines of this issue, eliminating the need for multiple passwords and identities. And tools like these don’t just benefit brokers. Fewer login issues mean fewer customer service calls for carriers, agencies, and even us, the vendor, which means more time for other tasks. A win-win for all!  

3. Carriers are focusing on solutions to support agency interactions with the end insured 

At the end of the day, we’re all in insurance for one reason: to help people! Many carriers are at the forefront of innovation, helping their agencies make smarter connections with their customers. Carrier originated alerts that are pushed to an agency’s management system are providing a faster way for agencies to receive customer information. For example, if a customer makes a change to their auto policy, that change is sent directly to the agency via an alert within the AMS so they can touch base with their customer on the spot. This is just one of the examples of how carriers are working to create a stronger relationship with their agency partners.  

Market connectivity is just the tip of the iceberg of what we’re focusing on at Vertafore. To hear more about our other initiatives, make sure to join us from October 19–21 at InsureTech Connect’s virtual approach to their annual conference: ITC Global. Whether in the virtual booth or at a session, there’s plenty of ways to “Connect” with us! 

  • A Fireside Chat with Amy Zupon Hosted by Jordan Nof – Wednesday, October 21, from 11:15 - 11:35 a.m. MT (recommended for the broker & carrier audience)
  • The Next Generation of Agency Management – Wednesday, October 21, from 11:30 a.m. - noon MT (recommended for the broker audience)
  • Powering Distribution Management Demo – Wednesday, October 21, from 12 - 12:08 p.m. MT (recommended for the carrier audience)
  • Solving the Agency/Carrier Market Connectivity Conundrum – Wednesday, October 21, from 12:10 - 12:40 p.m. MT (recommended for the broker & carrier audience)