Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of South Carolina President Frank Sheppard explains how GrowthZone software helped their staff of 10 users become more efficient.
Why were you looking for a new AMS?
The platform we were on before was a custom built product, specific to my colleagues and myself, a very small group. There’s one of me in every state, as a state association. So, there were only 50 potential customers. We were at the point where we couldn’t customize it anymore. I don’t believe Microsoft was supporting it anymore. And, it was just the perfect opportunity to jump into something that was more robust, more customizable, all of those features, and affordable.
What ROI are you seeing?
First off, just the affordability, what we’re paying and what we get for GrowthZone, the stability of the system, the fact that it’s constantly updated, those were things we were having to either manage – or pay for – separately in the past. Just from that standpoint, the investment that we’re getting or that we’re making and the return that we’re getting now is measurable. It’s significant.
What do you like best about GrowthZone?
I think the event management platform was a big plus for my staff members. The communication tools built in GrowthZone have been very helpful, also, to customize and individually send out messages by groups, by event, by location, whatever we’re tagging in those regards. So those are some of the early features, I think, that were a big improvement over what we were doing before.
How does GrowthZone make you more efficient?
We do a lot of event management and continuing education tracking for our individual members. Our members are companies or organizations, and they may have one or two staff, they may have 250 staff members. The ability to track those businesses along with the individuals and all of their corresponding data is something that we’ve found very helpful in GrowthZone. I love the fact that it’s cloud-based, so now immediately we have access to our data, wherever we are. It’s pretty intuitive. Now we have a version that is built for the insurance agent association world. Again, that’s a pretty small universe, but there are multiple state organizations like us that are sharing this. We’re able to collaborate and we learn from each other. That’s made us more efficient in that we don’t have to relearn it individually, we don’t have to invent it. Somebody else is probably doing something that we want to do, so being able to share that in our group has been real helpful.
What about your onboarding experience?
Honestly, I think the transition – for me – went better than I expected. I wasn’t expecting a bad experience, but we got a good experience. What you would expect in most cases, is a bumpy, stretched out process. That did not happen with us. It went much smoother than I thought, and the GrowthZone team was responsive. They were on top of it.
How about ongoing support?
From a CEO level, at the top, that’s what matters most to me, is that my staff is getting the support they need, and they’re not coming to me because it’s not happening or it’s not reliable or it’s not correcting the problem. That is not happening for me. So, that’s the best endorsement I can probably pass on. I’m not getting the calls.
Would you recommend GrowthZone to others?
I’ve had other association people ask me what we’re doing and I have actually recommended GrowthZone. And, there’s a lot of platforms as we started this. There’s a lot of platforms to consider out there, a lot of uniqueness. But for what we’re looking for – consistency, reliability, cloud-based, affordable, customizable, and continually to grow and develop, GrowthZone has been a great answer for what we’re doing here.