What’s Salesforce Got In-Store for the Insurance Business Community?

by Tina Peppers - President & Founder - Domina Technology Solutions on April 9, 2010 · 6 comments

Insurance agencies that like their current agency management system but want more should read this article and inquire about the possibilities. I am learning every day from Tina that the possibilities are endless, expense to deploy low and ROI amazing.

Hopefully by now you’ve heard plenty about Cloud Computing and Software as a Service (not necessarily the same thing). One of the big players in this space is Salesforce.

When you think of Salesforce it might conjure up thoughts of marketing campaigns, sales pipelines and opportunities and you would be correct. Salesforce started as just a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) package, but lately Salesforce has moved into the Platform as a Service and believe it or not Social Networking for the enterprise with their latest Chatter product.

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Salesforce now provides a platform to build and deploy applications in Force.com. According to a 2009 IDC study, using Force.com to create applications is ½ the cost of Java and .Net, 5x faster and 97% reduction in downtime.  Translation, the application is faster to develop, cheaper to develop and more reliable.  Considering no need for infrastructure and even a discounted per user fee (around $50 a month) you get the platform and out of the box services such as Workflow, Reporting and Analytics, Access Control and Audits and Mobile devices ready (such as iPhone and Blackberry apps) .

What makes this platform interesting is all the capabilities that you are getting with no infrastructure and little development. Using clicks instead of code, a novice user would be able to create their own database, data entry forms, reports, schedule the reports and have the report sent via email to the recipient.  They could create an HTML email template, populate the template and have a workflow send the email out based on a business rule using clicks instead of code.

Salesforce is already establishing a presence in the insurance space by establishing a Salesforce Insurance User group comprised of many different areas such as Insurance Carriers, Agencies, and Brokers from both P&C and Life& Health.  One of the group’s goals is to find creative ways to solve common problems using Salesforce and Force.com. Through many group meetings, one of the most interesting applications of this new platform is applying this new technology to legacy data or technology-challenged systems; an example is being able to present your insureds with auto id cards through a secured customer portal while still using your current system. Using the Open Architecture and Web Services of the Force.com platform made this a reality in a matter of few weeks from inception to production.

Replacing your current system might be cost prohibitive or even deemed disastrous, but have you thought about extending your system to get the benefit of new technology? Ask Tina what are the possibilities for using Salesforce and Force.com.

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