HIIQ Expands Legal and Regulatory Compliance Team

Health Insurance Innovations (HIIQ) recently announced the addition of experienced Arizona attorney Jan Dubauskas to its legal and regulatory compliance team. Dubauskas will serve as Vice President and Senior Counsel while working closely with the company’s commercial division.

Dubauskas brings over 10 years of experience to HIIQ. She specializes in managing legal and compliance matters for life and health insurance carriers, most recently as General Counsel for IHC Specialty Benefits, Inc. A member of The IHC Group, IHC specialty benefits represents carriers that provide individual and supplemental health insurance.

“HIIQ continues to build out its first-class legal and regulatory team,” said Gavin Southwell, President & CEO of HIIQ. “With Jan’s depth and range of experience working with insurance carriers, HIIQ is taking our contract and commercial business operations to the next level.”

Dubauskas will join an expert team of legal and regulatory compliance leaders at HIIQ. She will work alongside Janis Rosenthal, HIIQ’s Regulatory Counsel and Vice President of Legal Affairs. Rosenthal joined HIIQ in 2017 and is a member of the HIIQ Executive Leadership Team who also manages the company’s veteran in-house regulatory counsel.

Head over to investor.hiiquote.com to read the full press release on the addition of Jan Dubauskas to the HIIQ team.

 

 

 

Health Insurance Innovations Multistate Examination Concludes with No Penalty or Regulatory Action

Multistate Examination Settled

On December 12, 2018, Health Insurance Innovations, Inc. (the “Company”), together with its subsidiary Health Plan Intermediaries Holdings, LLC (“HPIH”), entered into a Regulatory Settlement Agreement (the “RSA”) with the lead state regulators in the Company’s previously disclosed multistate market conduct examination. As previously disclosed, in April 2016 the Company became the subject of a multistate market conduct examination that reviewed the Company’s sales, marketing, and administration practices (the “MCE”). The MCE was joined by 43 states, including Indiana (the “Participating Jurisdictions”). The MCE is led by the insurance regulators in Indiana, Florida, Kansas, Montana, and Utah (the “Lead States”), with the Indiana Department of Insurance serving as the managing Lead State.

As stated in the RSA, the Company denies any wrongdoing or activities that violate the insurance laws, and the RSA states that the RSA shall not be deemed or construed as evidence, or an admission, or acknowledgment by the Company of any wrongdoing or liability.

To read the settlement in full, click here.

Ways for Insurance Agents to Build Trust With Clients in a Digital World

How Do Independent Health Insurance Agents Build Trust in Today’s Digital World?

“Trust”

It’s one powerful word. It’s the foundation of any positive relationship—whether it’s with your spouse, your friends, or your customers. But as an independent health insurance agent or insurance agency, how do you build trust with your potential customers in today’s digital world?

It’s ok not to have an answer. In fact, if you asked a thousand different agents, you’d probably get a thousand different answers, each with overlapping themes and ideas that keep the industry alive today. So, let’s examine what trust really means, if anything, in today’s digital world.

Right now, individual consumers have more power than ever when they need to find health insurance or compare different types of health insurance. Back in the year 2000, about one out of every two adults in America used the internet. And “used the internet” meant an entirely different thing back in the age of dial-up modems and companies like Amazon just beginning to emerge as online retailers. Today, almost 9 out of 10 U.S. adults use the internet according to the Pew Research Center1.

And, use it, we certainly do. From requesting a ride to keeping up with the latest news, and shopping for health insurance, it seems like every exchange we make can now be conducted online—and trust is integral to all of this.

A simple internet search can provide today’s consumer with a wealth of knowledge about you and your agency. They can compare pricing, comprehensiveness of coverage, and find the best value for their money from other agencies and insurance companies across the nation.

This is why it’s so important to build and maintain an agency brand, and even more important, a personal brand that conveys trust.

“Brand and branding are one of the most important aspects of growing a business and are the absolute last things independent agents think about for the most part,” said Ryan Hanley2, Chief Marketing Officer at Bold Penguin, a leading Insurtech company based in Columbus, OH.

As insurance professionals, it’s often easy to take a one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to branding: maybe you build a website that works as a digital billboard for your business; you do the same on social media; fire off a few posts about the benefits of doing business with you; but in the end, your online presence is an afterthought. The ultimate goal is to get those phones ringing and people insured.

“Your brand is your overarching concept and should define who you are as a professional and who your firm is in an overarching way,” said Marty Agather2, Executive Vice President of Business Development at Innovator’s Edge. “It needs to be coordinated, contiguous, and all related so that when I (the customer) see your brand and I see who you are, those two things mesh.”

Simply put, your personal brand needs to reflect your agency’s brand.

But how does trust play into all of this?

As an agency, you can build trust before the customer even interacts with one of your agents over the phone. For example, you can build a robust website filled with testimonials* from current or former customers. On that website, you can host a blog with posts written by your agents to educate and empower your potential customers on different types of insurance plans, benefits, and any limitations or other considerations in a way they can understand. You can share those posts on your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn pages to grow your presence as a thought leader online.

But this all costs time and money, two things some independent agencies need more of, let alone have any to spare. Big health insurance companies like UnitedHealth and Blue Cross Blue Shield can spare the time and money to build big online campaigns to humanize themselves by educating and empowering the public with the end goal of growing revenue. While you might not be able to replicate these big-budget tactics, there are certain things you can do right now to build a foundation of trust between you and your potential consumers.

The first thing you can do on a personal level is making yourself reachable. The last thing someone wants from the person selling them something as important as health insurance is for that person to virtually disappear after the purchase. Whether it’s a simple “You can always reach me on my personal line and I’ll be sure to respond within 24 hours” or making a public social media profile with your smiling face and full name followed by your agency’s name—there are small steps you can take to build these trusted relationships.

Here’s something to think about—74% of consumers research insurance purchases online, yet only 25% of them actually purchase online. So, where do the remaining consumers make their health insurance purchases? According to this infographic by DialogTech…

Over 60% of health insurance consumers make their purchase over the phone with an agent3.

That’s why you have to think on a human level—why you have to think of yourself as a personal brand when it comes to building trusted relationships with your customers. We won’t get into the details of cold-calling, but think for a second—am I truly living up to the values and ethics my brand stands for? Am I fully listening to this person’s needs? Am I trying to influence or inform right now?

While sales are vital to any business, it’s certainly worth thinking about how you approach those sales and the customer relationships that come with them.

At the end of the day, we’re social creatures. Our relationships with other people make us who we are. As an insurance agent, you get the opportunity to foster new relationships every day while looking out for the lives and well-being of people from all walks of life. By keeping honesty, transparency and trustworthiness as you guideposts, you might be surprised by the benefits you’ll reap from this mindset.

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This blog is for agent use only – not for public distribution.

*Your state may have specific requirements about the content of testimonials. In general, they need to be accurate and reflective the customers’ experience (so they can’t be edited to appear like the client is saying one thing when actually they are saying something else) and they cannot create an unrealistic impression of what someone else should expect. When an agent (or insurer for that matter) use testimonials, they take them on as their own and that means they have to meet any other advertising standards. Additionally, how old a testimonial is is another issue to be aware of. If it’s several years old, it may no longer be an accurate statement. We suggest testimonials older than a year to be discontinued..

If you want to become a licensed HIIQ agent, get in touch with us here.

Sources

  1. “Internet/Broadband Fact Sheet.” Pew Research Center. http://www.pewinternet.org/fact-sheet/internet-broadband/
  2. “Can Independent Agents Build Trusted Relationships in a Technology-Driven World?” Ryan Hanley. https://www.agencynation.com/can-independent-agents-build-trusted-relationships-technology-driven-world/
  3. “Shoot for Higher ROI: The Best Way to Optimize Insurance Marketing in a Digital World.” DialogTech. https://www.dialogtech.com/expertise/infographic/shoot-for-higher-insurance-roi-with-phone-calls

 

 

Kofax Issues a “Glowing” Case Study on Health Insurance Innovations

Kofax, a leading provider of process automation software, issued a comprehensive review of Health Insurance Innovations’ (HIIQ) new compliance process in a recent case study.

Entitled “Success Story for Healthcare”, the study examines the challenge, solution and results that Kofax Customer Communications Manager™ software has produced for HIIQ’s compliance specialists.

To ensure every customer fully understands the coverage they’re purchasing through a contracted agent or broker, Health Insurance Innovations utilizes sales verification scripts. The agents or broker reads through the script with the customer before their purchase is finalized. Scripts often contain important information like whether the policy meets the requirements of the Affordable Care Act, and which conditions the policy does or does not cover.

With nearly 50 policies ranging from dental care to emergency treatment—and a required script for each one—HIIQ’s compliance department was tasked with managing all updates, revisions, and version control of every script. In the past, this was done manually. But, as Health Insurance Innovations experienced unprecedented growth over the last two years, this manual process became a time and cost-intensive challenge.

That’s when Health Insurance Innovations chose to employ the Kofax Customer Communications Manager™. This software now serves as a single source of up-to-date and accurate information (including sales verification scripts) on all policies distributed via the HIIQ platform.

Furthermore, it automatically maintains a record of document and script edits with an author and date attributed to each change.

“Maintaining consistency across scripts is so much easier than before. Previously, I had to open numerous Microsoft Word documents and PDFs to ensure that the same language was used throughout,” said Dominique Meitzen, Lead Verification Specialist at HIIQ. “Now, I can search our entire script collection at the touch of a button. And if I need to modify a certain block of text, I can make the update once and automatically apply the change to all scripts. The solution is a huge time-saver, enabling me to work more productively.”

The results? Script updates that used to take hours or days are now completed in minutes; agents are happy to work with Health Insurance Innovations knowing they’ll be equipped with timely and accurate product information; and carriers are too, trusting that their policies will be correctly represented to consumers seeking affordable health insurance, ancillary health care plans and more.

Click here to download the full case study on Health Insurance Innovations by Kofax.