The Different Types Of Commercial Insurance Brokers

To the average man or woman on the street, the world in which commercial insurance brokers live and operate will be little more than a mystery. The field of insurance in general is still barely understood by laymen and women, and with commercial insurance being one of its most specialised branches, this effect is felt several-fold.

Few people seeking to take out this type of insurance will be aware, for instance, that there are several types of commercial insurance brokers on the market, each with its own specific ways to operate, strengths and limitations. At best, most of these men and women will be aware of the existence of the main, larger insurance companies, with the countless smaller operators being known to only a minuscule portion of the overall demographic, mostly through research or word of mouth. Yet, on occasion, these alternative types of commercial insurance brokers may actually be more suited for what an individual or business is after than the more ‘mainstream’ alternatives; it is with that in mind that the present article seeks to introduce prospective clients to the different types of commercial insurance companies available, so that they may assess which will best suit their specific situation.

Insurer-Owned Brokers

Insurer-owned companies are perhaps the most widespread and prolific sub-section of the commercial insurance market, and many of the most popular and best-known commercial insurance brokers fall under this category. As the name indicates, these outfits are owned by large insurance companies, who typically dictate their standards and practices. In certain countries, this model was considered the industry standard for commercial brokers for decades; it has, however, recently begun to lose ground, as the effectiveness of these types of outfits began to dwindle. Nowadays, many experts make a case for the model being outdated, and it is predicted that insurer-owned commercial insurance brokers will continue to lose market space in years to come.

Broker Networks

Broker networks comprise several small commercial insurance brokers, all of which share resources, assets and market opportunities between them. In its ideal form, this is considered to be a beneficial model for companies that choose to join one of these networks, with many of them advertising better commissions for individual brokers and service conditions for the companies as a whole; however, adhesion to this type of network remains uneven between countries.

Consolidated Brokers

Consolidated commercial insurance brokers result from one company assimilating, buying out or otherwise consolidating any number of smaller ones, in similar fashion to a corporate merger. At one point, these types of companies were the most common type of commercial insurance brokers in certain markets, with consolidations happening as frequently as once a week. The practice has significantly lost steam since then, however, mainly due to the fact that the exact benefits to be reaped from consolidation processes are not always clear. This has caused many brokers to sour on the practice, and much like insurer-owner brokers, it is thought that this type of brokerage firm may lose even more ground in years to come.

Independent Brokers

The fourth and final type of brokerage firm are independent brokers, that is, brokers which are not associated with either of the three types described earlier in this article. These tend to be smaller, often family or owner-run companies, with smaller and more personalised client bases, and frequently focused on more specialised or less explored areas of the field. Customers resorting to an independent broker can expect a more personalised service, with a higher rate of face-to-face interactions and more time devoted to each case. This type of company is less prevalent in the modern landscape than any of the previously listed ones, but there are still a few independent commercial insurance brokers left, and they tend to attract a small yet loyal customer base.

These are, in broad strokes, the main types of commercial insurance brokers available to customers. It is, therefore, up to each individual to work out which business configuration would be most suitable to their specific needs, in order to avoid disappointment down the road.

What Does a Health Insurance Broker Do?

Those seeking to understand who is involved in the nebulous system that is contemporary American healthcare will discover a wide variety of individuals, each with unique roles. One such role is that of the health insurance broker, also known as an “independent agent” or “health insurance agent.” This article seeks to shed some light on who the health insurance broker is, what they do and, ultimately, what role they play in the selection of health insurance policies.

A health insurance broker’s job is to provide clients with the most appropriate health insurance policy. Authorized by specific insurance companies to act on their behalf, the broker essentially guides clients through the process of selecting a policy for themselves or for employees. A broker makes his living (and demographics show the broker is usually a “he”) off commissions – sometimes as much as 15%. The rates quoted by broker or by direct contact with insurance provider will be the same because, if the insurance company is contacted directly, the person who makes the sale (known as a “captive agent”) will collect the same commission a broker would collect. Some states even mandate the use of insurance brokers.

In most instances, an individual seeking to be a licensed health insurance broker must take a series of courses then take and pass one or more examinations. Once licensed, a state or employer may require health insurance brokers to take additional classes. Because policies and laws change constantly, a broker involved in continuing education will be more current on applicable law and guidelines and, ideally, better prepared to assist clients. Each state makes its own laws to govern the practices of insurance brokers. While no two states have the same law, increasingly states are recognizing licenses granted in other states. This allows brokers to move without retaking examinations or to operate in more than one state simultaneously.

An individual going into their first day of work as a licensed health insurance broker tends to be older than the average person entering into a given area of employment. This is because the typical health insurance broker has transferred into the industry, usually from a sales position in another healthcare field – hospital equipment sales, for example. An individual with a sales background tends to be comfortable with the demands of the job – like providing excellent customer services, working to maintain a client base, and living on a commission-based salary.

While many come into the health care broker industry having worked professionally in other fields, some do enter the field directly after getting a university diploma. Those coming straight from college are likely to have majored in business or sales. In some cases, health insurance brokerage houses will directly mentor undergraduates – and even offer tuition assistance or loan pay-back plans – provided the undergraduate agrees to work for the brokerage house for a pre-determined number of years.

Active health insurance brokers have the option of joining the National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU) and the umbrella organization of the American Insurance Association (AIA). Both organizations have ethical guidelines that must be followed to maintain membership in good standing. A health insurance broker must divide a typical day between two general tasks: meeting with current and potential clients and fulfilling administrative duties. The broker acts as an agent on behalf of the insurance companies in his or her portfolio, so administrative duties include processing claims, cutting checks and delivering payment. The meetings will be with current clients, to ensure they are being kept abreast of all changes or trends, or potential clients, to present options with the hopes of generating additional business.

Some hire administrative assistance to help but the salary is usually taken from an insurance broker’s earnings. It is usually only the seasoned veterans (who may earn over $100,000 annually) who hire help, rather than those relatively new to the industry (who often earn about $40,000 annually).

The health insurance broker functions as the liaison between insurance company and policyholder, but the nature of the industry is changing. Access to the Internet is available to a tremendous number of Americans and, with online access, consumers are more aware than ever before of the healthcare options available to them. This means that any potential client, if they have done their research, will be aware of a variety of policy offerings. Because not every agent is licensed by every company, a broker may not be able to offer the policy that interests a given client. This places the burden on the broker to be aware of all policies available and to be able to present comparable offerings to those that they may not be able to sell.

Just as the Internet has empowered consumers, so has it empowered health insurance brokers. When once the task of acting as conduit between insurance company and policyholder required long administrative hours, computers now allow broker and insurance company to instantly transfer information. Still, time saved by computer must be made up by competing for a limited and educated client base. The new technology has in part driven a trend towards specialization: brokers are marketing themselves as specialists in a given industry. One might be the specialist in non-profit health insurance while another may specialize in the travel industry. This allows brokers to be aware not just of policy options but also of the typical wants, needs and budgets of a given industry.

What directions technology will propel the industry will be revealed only with time. One thing that remains clear is that Americans do not want to worry about their health coverage and will look to experts for help securing the best service at the right price.

Insurance Brokers – Bridging the Divide

The term broker traditionally refers to a person or entity that acts on behalf of a buyer or client which is known as the principle. The broker uses their knowledge and expertise to advise the client on certain decision usually pertaining to purchasing and trading. The broker can either play an advisory role or may also have complete purchasing and decision making power in order to act on behalf of the client or principle.

The most commonly found form of brokers are investment brokers and commodity brokers. People who wish to invest their money and trade in commodities seldom have the knowledge and time to manage their investment portfolio’s closely so they employ broker’s such as these who have a lot more insight and expertise to act on their behalf. There are however many other forms of brokers who also provide people with their inputs of knowledge and expertise. Other examples of brokers include business brokers, Forex brokers, real estate brokers, insurance brokers and many more.

The term insurance broker is however a very vague one. In the past insurance brokers were just like any other broker, but specialising in insurance policies. They would act on behalf of the principle/individual who employed them in order to investigate various insurance options from various insurance companies in order to secure the best deals for the principle, as well as help interpret certain formalities within insurance contracts. A trend eventually developed in which insurance brokers did not necessarily look out for the best interests of the principle and would favour certain insurance companies. In fact many insurance companies posed as brokers in order to obtain the preference of deceived and uninformed individuals. As a result the term insurance broker has developed into one with a much broader meaning. Today an insurance broker is essentially seen as any person who acts as an agent to insurance on behalf of the principle, irrespective of whether the agent is acting in the interest of the principle or in the interest of a particular insurance company.

In reality the term insurance broker is hardly ever used to refer to an agent who is hired by individuals seeking the best insurance offers. Today it is more accurately applied to employees of insurance companies who represent the clients of that company. Insurance brokers still represent insured individuals, but instead they are hired by the insurance company itself to handle the claims, legalities and transactions between the insured and the insurance company. Therefore most brokers represent only one insurance company and act in the interests of the insurance company which they represent. The broker essentially acts as an intermediary which communicates the interests of the insured to the insurance company, manages the procedures of coverage and ensures that the insurance contract is adhered to.

In conclusion, the existence of an broker is very necessary to both the insurance company and the insured individual, as they insure that neither party breaches the insurance contract and make sure that procedures are followed. The insurance broker also makes it easier for insured individuals to communicate their interests to the company and successfully make claims should the need arise.

The Role of Car Insurance Brokers

The role of a car insurance broker is to act as an intermediary between the customer and the underwriting Insurance Company. Within this role there are various functions that they carry out in interaction both with the car insurance buying public and the Insurer with who they place the business.

When a broker places car and motor insurance risks on cover, their role has a major difference to other types of insurance in that the spread of risk is smaller. This is because a very high proportion of motor business is eventually placed on the basis of ‘one risk, one underwriter’ – that is to say, a Lloyd’s underwriter or Motor Insurance company.

When a member of the public goes to a motor insurance broker they expect that the broker should be fully aware of all the covers available and offered in a standard car insurance policy and a commercial motor policy. A broker also should be knowledgeable about the differences in policies and prices offered by the various Insurance Companies and underwriters with which his brokerage does business.

The Car Insurance Brokers role does not just stop with the supplying and purchasing of the insurance. They should be available to act as an intermediary with the Insurer at any time, acting upon the client’s behalf should there be any changes to the policy mid-term of the contract period, or to deal with any claims that need to be made.

The two main insurance areas dealt with by the car insurance broker are the private individual’s motor policy and the commercial fleet motor policy.

A marked tendency in the large broking house during recent years has been to concentrate more and more on the commercial motor insurance fleet placings, and less and less on the private sector of the market.

Many large international insurance brokers view the private motor insurance as uneconomic for a fully sustainable business, and so specialist sub-brokers or large provincial and regional brokers are dealing with a greater proportion of this class of motor business.

Car Insurance Brokers receive commissions for their role as intermediaries which are received from the Insurance companies with which the business is placed. The commissions available in the motor market varies somewhat and the recent ‘soft market’ where premiums and commissions are low, have also led the high street insurance broker to seek more profitable business in insurance classes other than Motor. Commissions for a car insurance policy may range from 7½ per cent to 20 per cent although with commercial vehicle contracts and large fleet business, brokerage may be agreed on a fee basis which is often charged over the whole portfolio for that particular client. In the past a standard rate or tariff which was agreed and reviewed by the Association of British Insurers professional body (ABI) was used in the UK car insurance market. This is no longer the case, but this approach still influences some underwriters in some specialist car insurance areas.

In recent years, however, many larger brokers have developed what is known as a ‘direct dealing account’. This is where the broker introduces a sub-broker to underwriters and then permits him to deal directly with them under a fronting agreement with their own marketing. The accounts, however, will still pass through the main broker. The commission is split between the main broker and the sub-broker, with the sub-broker usually commanding the higher percentage. An important restriction applied to the sub-broker within the fronting agreement is that he must pass the premium on to the main broker within 30 days of inception of the risk.

The role of the motor broker has changed somewhat in recent years with the development of Internet based quotation systems.

In particular the insurance comparison websites who have taken over the role of the broker to some extent. These quotation systems have been used successfully however by some car insurance brokers who have adapted and embraced the technology and now offer full on-line comparison quotes from their panels of insurance providers. The benefits are a very quick service, although it may still be advantageous for the broker to ‘shop around’ for the best deal for one’s client, particularly if the cover is for a non standard driver or car.

Whatever the changes in the technologies and methods of Car Insurance delivery there will always be clients who want a human face and to talk to someone directly about their insurance needs. The role of the broker is ultimately communication.

Five Reasons To Use An Insurance Broker When Looking For Insurance

When buying insurance, you can choose to buy direct from an insurance company, from a tied agent or a bank that represents one company or you can choose to purchase your insurance through an insurance broker. Most brokers can save you money on your insurance not to mention the time you would otherwise spend shopping around yourself but there are other reasons why using an insurance broker can be of major benefit to you.

Here are just some of the advantages of purchasing your insurance through an insurance broker:

An insurance broker works for you – not the insurance company. Your insurance broker is not tied to a specific company or a specific company’s products. They can search a number of companies and their products to find the best deal for you. A broker can take a thorough look at your personal needs and recommend the best and most suitable product for you based on your situation. Insurance brokers can get you the best deal available from their large portfolio of products and provider, while banks or insurance companies can only offer you the products from one company, and are therefore more limited in the number of products they can offer.

Insurance Brokers are experienced and professional. Brokers deal with a wide range of products and services and are qualified to recommend the policies that best suit your needs from the wide range of companies that they deal with. They will know for example what companies are best suited for younger drivers for example or who is best for providing public liability for your industry. They typically have experience with claims and can guide you through the often confusing and stressful claims process, answering any questions that you may have. What’s more most brokerages in Ireland are generally smaller and can often offer a faster and more personalized support. Brokers are also committed to continual professional development and lifelong learning, ensuring that they are informed on the latest changes and adjustments to insurance policies and legislation to give you the best options available when you purchase your next policy.

Insurance Brokers are regulated: Brokers are required to meet certain standards and financial obligations. In addition to the requirement to hold professional indemnity insurance, they are required to carry out a process with each client to ensure that they are recommending the correct product to suit your needs. A ‘fact find’ should be used to discover your exact needs and requirements and on this information the broker should make their informed recommendations. A ‘reasons why’ letter or ‘statement of suitability’ should also be presented to the client outlining why the product and the provider is being recommended and how they meet the clients specific needs.

You can get access to insurance companies that you cannot access on your own: In recent years there are more and more insurance companies popping up that only deal directly with brokers. In transacting business in this way they can save costs and do not have the same requirement for large call centres or large administration teams to deal with the public. They can then pass on these savings to you, the consumer. Many of these companies only deal directly through brokers so you will not be able to get a quote directly. Certainly over the past couple of years we have found ourselves recommending these companies more and more as they are able to consistently deliver on price, product and service.

Insurance Brokers are required to give full disclosure on commission and fees and the effect on your insurance premium: Of course brokers need to be paid too and they get generally get paid a percentage commission from the insurance companies. In addition to this they may also charge a small fee for their services. As part of the regulation they must provide you with a copy of their terms of business which outlines the companies they deal with, how they are paid and details of any fees they may charge. This allows you to make an informed choice when buying insurance.

Choosing an insurance broker means that you have a professional on your side when choosing the best policy for yourself, your business and your family. Insurance brokers offer professional and unbiased advice, ethical conduct, and full disclosure of all the information you need to make an informed decision. They can talk you through each stage while giving you personalised advice and excellent customer service. So next time you are looking for insurance or renewing your current product why not contact your local broker first and see what a great service they can offer you.

How To Make Money Using an Udemy Online Teaching Course

A few decades ago, it was hard to find a good teacher. The only option that you had was to look for one in your area because the Internet was not available at that time. Nowadays, the internet has made it a lot easier to learn from the comfort of home. If you have been thinking of taking a certain course to hone your skills, we suggest that you check out Udemy. Let’s find out how people make money on Udemy by launching courses through websites. Read on to know more.

What Is Udemy?

Basically, this platform brings both students and teachers together. As a matter of fact, Udemy is one of the top platforms for online courses. It offers a lot of free tools and support for instructors to develop courses and make money from them.

Udemy allows anyone to create a course and offer it to everyone across the globe through its platform. Nowadays, the platform has more than 15 million students from more than 190 countries. Moreover, it has courses in more than 80 languages.

Launching a Course

If you want to submit a course on Udemy, you may want to follow the steps below. We will talk about each step in detail so you can get started without any problem.

Sign up

First of all, you may want to go to the home page of Udemy and sign up for an account, which will cost you nothing. As soon as you have signed up, you can access tons of free as well as paid courses.

Course creation

After signing up, you can hit the “Teaching” button. The “Create a course” button will show up that you can press to create a course and become a tutor.

Udemy revenue model

For course creation, Udemy won’t charge you any fee. On the other hand, for selling, you do have to consider the revenue model offered by the platform. Let’s find out more about the revenue model.

Instructor promotion

After a lead generation, the entire revenue goes to the course instructor. For instance, if a lead is generated through the coupon code given by the course creator, the instructor will get the revenue.

Organic traffic

If the course buyer comes to the platform through organic traffic, 50% of the revenue will go to the course creator. And the rest will go to the website. So, there is a lot of money to be made even if you don’t use other means to get the word about your courses.

Other revenue sharing model

This revenue sharing ratio can be between 25% and 97%. Actually, the ratio is based on the fact whether the customer comes to the platform via deals, ads or affiliates. So, based on these factors, the revenue can be more or less.

Resources for Udemy

Udemy helps you throughout the process. Whether you are going to create a course or you want to promote, the platform has resources for you. Udemy offers tons of free resources that help you make your course a success. As a matter of fact, the free resources on this platform are on the list of the best advantages of Udemy, as they help you make money from your course without too much struggle.

So, if you have been thinking of creating a course and publishing it on Udemy, we suggest that you take into account the advice given in this article. Just make sure your course is interesting and it can help your students learn new things. And that’s all you need in order to sell your courses and make a lot of money.

Ideal Solutions To Success Online

If you have ever spent time looking for ideal solutions to success online, you could find yourself very frustrated. You found that there are basic ways to succeed in this line of work. You know that online work isn’t hard, physical labor. Working online is easy in that there isn’t a lot of physical work involved. People who work hard as builders, factory workers, office personnel and in administration, must work hard and produce good results or they no longer have a job. Online work isn’t hard physically. However, it takes tenacity, perseverance, and a little knowledge to be successful. Perhaps herein lies part of your annoyance. Let’s look at some things that bring frustration into your ideal online performance. The items are not listed in any particular order of difficulty or ordered frustration levels.

Number 1, Building a Website

The number one thing that frustrates many people and keeps them from being successful online is building a website. This one thing kept me from being successful online years ago. When you find the right training building a website can be really easy. You don’t have to know HTML to build one today. You can learn how to make a website at certain locations on the Internet. There are places where you can learn how to make a free website.

Number 2, Finding a Domain Name

The best way to relieve frustration from finding a domain name is to first find the niche you want to promote. The name of your site needs to match the niche you have chosen. So, the way you keep this from being frustrating is to identify your niche, and then write a list of 10 to 15 names that describe your niche. It’s like choosing a title for a book, the title must tell what the book is about. Same with your domain name. It must tell what your niche is about. I prefer to stick with a .com. It’s just a personal preference that you don’t have to adhere to.

Number 3, Getting Site Ready

Until you learn, getting your site ready for search engine optimization can be really frustrating. Actually, it can be next to impossible if you don’t have the proper training. Again, I have a page for you to review that explains the ins and outs of preparing your site for SEO. Again, you can write articles, use social media such as Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. The big question you need to ask is, “Where are you going to get the training and knowledge on how to make these ideas work for you?”

Number 4, Getting Traffic

The number one goal for any marketing site is to drive traffic to it. There are many ways to do this, but the only way I choose to do this is by writing good content for my website. What if you can’t write, or at least you think you can’t? Many sites offer training on how to write.The training on a few sites is phenomenal. Every bit of the training is to help you build a site, monetize it and then drive traffic to it. You can learn so many ideas on what to write that you will never run out of something to write about. Getting traffic is almost done for you. All you have to do is follow directions.

Number 5, Training

Before I found a helpful site, training was my nemesis. The lack of training defeated me every time and cost me money. The training I have gotten has given me a handle on success. I have learned how to succeed because I have been trained well. Following are a few things I have been able to find online:

Certification Courses: 5 Levels

1. Getting Started

2. Build Your own Traffic Producing Website

3. Making Money!

4. Mastering Social Engagement

5. Achieving Maximum Success Through Content Creation

Each level has several courses and the training available to make you successful! I repeated most of the lessons. Some were simple but needed more exploring. Others were new to me and my then limited expertise. I can’t believe how much knowledge is packed into these lessons. Yet the progress from one step to the next is given in easy steps for those who aren’t technologically proficient when they begin the courses.

You Get All the Training

Every site that I tried before this would promise they could teach me how to be successful. What they taught me was that I needed to hire a group of professional online gurus to help me build a successful online business. I paid good money to learn this, too. Their ads said that even a monkey could learn how to use their program. I guess that I’m not as smart as a monkey because I couldn’t begin to understand what they were trying to teach me. “You’ll never believe how easy it is to make money online,” their ads read. I learned the hard way, out of pocketbook hard way, that paper will lie still and let you write anything on it. At least the paper they wrote on did! I was never able to follow more than the first couple steps. Not nearly enough to learn anything. However, all that has changed now. Since I found this site, I have learned how to be successful online. All I’ve done since I’ve been here is grow and grow. That’s where I am. That was what I was looking for in the first place. Can I tell you that I found a place where you can work at your pace, make the amount of money you want to make, and work when and where you want to.

Work for Yourself

The best boss you will ever have is YOU. Working for yourself online doesn’t require lots of energy. You don’t have to have a specific location where you go to work. With today’s technological advances, you can work from nearly anywhere. I prefer to work at home with my family nearby. That’s where you can find yourself, too. Are you ready for the change? Are you ready to be your own boss? Then don’t wait! Visit me to begin today!