This model is a proposed template for employee benefit advisors to adopt and follow with their clients. We're publishing this idea to start the conversation towards defining best practices for advisors, RAISING THE BAR with respect to expectations from employers and supporting brokers, advisors, and consultants on a journey to become industry leaders.
This template is yours to accept, reject, adopt or modify as you see fit for your clients large and small. It's our hope that at the very least it inspires advisors to look at their own process and continue to evolve it for better results and a better overall experience for clients.
There are four proposed meetings within the year, these could be quarterly or on a slightly different schedule (more on that another time). Each meeting or point of contact is designed to build on the next and stitch together a robust process that should result in an exceptional experience for clients (employers/plan sponsors of group insurance) as well as higher quality proactive advice each year! It should be noted that while the traditional preference would be for face to face meetings many groups are moving to virtual meetings to save on travel time and accomplish the same business objectives.
CloudAdvisors will be highlighting each of the four parts of this model over the next four posts as well as how the CloudAdvisor platform for Employee Benefit Advisors can empower you to organize, automate, advise and deliver with ease on each point. There are four meetings: Governance, Plan Audit, Claims Review, and Renewal. Many advisors and employers reading this will only be familiar with the last one or two, but we hope to reveal how all four play a crucial role in building a total value proposition for advisors to their clients.
- The kick-off meeting for the new year, this is a time of reflection and proactive planning for the year to come including reviewing services, brand promises as well as governance checklists including KYC (know your client). This meeting also sets up an ideal time for commission disclosure. More to come on all of this next post and how this meeting could be the most valuable time each year for an advisor and their client.
Plan Audit Meeting
- This is the follow up to Governance and a time to present a fresh look at every group, treating clients like prospects and making sure full attention is given to understanding all data, benefit objectives and client constraints. The plan audit is the opportunity to lay out all considerations as well as recommendations in priority to lead a discovery conversation. This is a proactive strategy session conducted months before the urgency of impending renewals.
Claims Review Meeting
- With the groundwork of Governance and Plan Audit laid down, the Claims Review meeting brings everything up to date with a detailed review of available claims experience (how the benefits are being used) year to date. In most plans, there is also an opportunity to have the majority if not all of the claims experience an insurer uses to calculate the renewal months in advance of proposed rate action. This is the time to budget for renewal and make decisions from the plan audit.
- The renewal meeting is traditionally the hallmark meeting for advisors and for some brokers, the only meeting each year. Each prior engagement has built to prepare the client for a pre-planned strategy at renewal and hopefully an uneventful effective date for employers and employees alike. Timing is key here as to ensure plan sponsors have time to react, make decisions and communicate to employees.
So there you have it, the four meetings of the new CloudAdvisors Advisory Model! Over the next four posts we will dig into each meeting with ideas, outlines, strategies, report templates as well as how the CloudAdvisor platform will help organize data, automate reports, support advice and digitally deliver each touchpoint with a client. As a side note, employers and brokers should take note that marketings and spreadsheets are not part of the annual process. As Employee Benefits are Vital to Families, benefit plans cannot be traded like other financial products between providers and should instead be proactively managed, seeking to add value to employers, employees and their families each year. At CloudAdvisors, with our products, services, support, and content like this we seek to empower advisors and independent advice first. We look forward to your comments and following us on this journey.
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