EZLynx Roadmap for 2017

A Note from the CEO

Happy New Year! I hope you all had a fantastic 2016! Based on the results of our annual customer survey, it seems you did – and we’re ready to help make 2017 even better.

The biggest highlight of 2016 for EZLynx came in October when we hosted our first AgentLynx User Conference in Dallas. Thank You to everyone that was able to attend! We had good participation from our agents and all our product sessions were extremely well attended. For me personally it was great to meet our customers face-to-face and listen to their feedback about our products. We are looking forward to the next AgentLynx User Conference to be held in San Diego sometime in March/April of 2018. Please be sure to register as soon as we make our announcement because we will be limiting the number of attendees.

EZLynx continues to make big strides in the industry. EZLynx was again acknowledged as the fastest growing management system vendor and is now the third biggest vendor behind Vertafore and Applied, according to the Big “I” and Future One 2016 Agency Universe study. More amazingly, our market share with EZLynx Rating Engine has continued to grow and is now a dominant number one in the market. I want to personally thank all our customers who chose EZLynx over other products and also enthusiastically responded to these industry surveys. I can assure you without your support EZLynx would not be the product it is today. Thanks once again from all of our employees.

We made some big new product announcements at AgentLynx 2016 – EZLynx Sales Center and an Amazon Alexa skill for agency owners. EZLynx Sales Center is an add-on product that lets agents manage their prospects and opportunities during the sales process. Similar to Retention Center, it is a highly optimized tool that helps keep all the information about your prospects at your fingertips. Sales Center has fantastic metrics with sales performance dashboards customized for each user. Sales Center will continue to evolve in 2017 with more features in the pipeline to include support for lead generator integration, EZLynx Consumer Quoting integration, custom fields, and more management reporting options. Please contact our sales team if you are interested in learning more about this innovative product.

Our Amazon Alexa skill started out as a playful experiment amongst our development team but soon turned out to be something bigger. We are fully committed to enhancing this app in the future based on your feedback. Alexa employs state of the art speech processing technology to parse your voice commands and provide meaningful responses. To be honest, Alexa is addictive and full of surprises once you start using it. I encourage our management system users to give our Alexa skill a try by searching for EZLynx from the Alexa app on your mobile device. Please note you do need to purchase an Alexa device from Amazon to be able to use this feature. Keep watching for more Alexa integrations in 2017!

I would like to quickly review what I outlined in my 2016 New Year’s article and update you on our progress. I made a promise to deliver a single platform customer lifecycle solution that can solve the challenges faced by our agents. Sales Center is an outstanding example of this. We realize how challenging the sales process can be, especially if you have multiple employees selling with different customer touch points. Sales Center centralizes all the activities under one screen and keeps all your employees on the same page. If you are an agency owner or a sales manager, it offers great reports and dashboards to monitor the performance of your team.

I also promised to make improvements to EZLynx Management System in 2016. We worked hard to build commercial features like manual policy data entry, quote proposals, applications, and ACORD® form support. We still have a few more commercial lines yet to support, but I expect to complete all lines by the end of 2017’s second quarter.

We made various other management system improvements with agency workspace, document management, and reporting that are too many to list.

EZLynx Accounting was seriously upgraded in 2016. We now have full support for branch accounting with integrated GL support for QuickBooks online.

If you are one of those rating customers waiting for our management system to fully mature, this may be the time. We have a solid data conversion team that will work with you to move your current policy data to EZLynx from more than 25 different management systems in less than 10 weeks. Please contact our sales team for more information. I can assure you that you will not regret your decision to move to EZLynx Management System!

I also promised to improve EZLynx Communication Center in 2016 with enhancements to Email Campaigns. You can now leverage our robust reporting feature by using your saved reports for bulk email blasts. Our reports allow you to create highly targeted upsell/cross-sell campaigns, and in turn, generate more leads from your existing customer data. We also added Custom Domains to help reduce spam blocking and to increase email open rate. Simply validate the domain that you use for email and our system will be able to send emails out on your behalf rather than under our own domain.

EZLynx Client Center was another product that I promised to improve in 2016. We have upgraded the user interface with a clean, modern look that is fully mobile responsive so that it behaves the same on any screen size. We also added support for commercial clients to add their own certificate holders and generate new certificates from within Client Center. This feature will let you offload some of this work to your customers while still allowing you to retain control over who gets access.

Looking Ahead…

Agency profitability, productivity, and serviceability have always been our focus areas. Beginning in 2017, agency automation is our new target area. We believe our users can experience significant gains in all levels of profitability, productivity, and serviceability by using system data to intelligently automate actions. We have exciting plans to make this happen with new EZLynx tools!

One goal of this type of automation is to allow you and your employees to focus more time on revenue-generating tasks. Through data analytics and business intelligence we feel confident that many of these processes can be automated without degrading the customer service experience. To the contrary, we believe this will actually improve the customer experience in the long run.

Our relentless focus on enhancing EZLynx Management System continues in 2017. We are already hard at work on enhancing commercial support, advanced accounting features, and much more. MAPs, or Market Access Providers, are another focus area for us in 2017. EZLynx Rating Engine is already the best rating product for this market with its built-in messaging and private carrier support. We plan to enhance some of these features to add support for policy management and policy servicing.

While I do not want to reveal the full scope of our Roadmap for competitive reasons, make no mistake that we have a vision for 2017 and beyond to make EZLynx the ultimate solution for independent agents.

I hope you have another prosperous year with EZLynx!


Updated Look & Feel for EZLynx Client Center

In the next few weeks we will roll out an update to Client Center to clean up and modernize the appearance. This cosmetic update is the first in a series of updates we have planned in the coming year to make Client Center a beautiful and useful tool for your customers and a time-saving tool for your agency!

This first update refreshes the general appearance to give it a more modern, neutral appearance. Our goal is to ensure that the appearance can easily be merged into your existing branding so that your clients can have a consistent experience from your website.

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We have also taken steps to make sure the layout makes sense when fully embedded in an iFrame, since in this scenario you do not need the typical header and footer areas.

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The new version is also mobile responsive. This means that the layout automatically adapts to the width of the screen size for each user, whether they’re on a 30″ Desktop Monitor or a 4″ Phone.  If you plan on embedding Client Center in an iFrame on your already responsive website, be sure to set the width of the iFrame to a fluid 100% so that it can automatically adjust along with the rest of your site.

client-center-change-request-mobile

Client Center saw some significant updates in 2016, with an easier login process, text message verification, multi-account support, and enhanced support for commercial clients with certificate holder self-generation. You will hear more in the coming months about our 2017 Roadmap, but suffice to say we have significant and game-changing plans for EZLynx Client Center in the year ahead!


Branch Support Comes to EZLynx Accounting

Handling branch interactions through EZLynx Accounting has been a highly requested feature. We are excited to announce that this round of enhancements expands upon the current EZLynx Accounting functionality and allows you to include branches in your accounting postings, transactions and accounting reports. For organizations with multiple branches, this functionality will greatly aid in the company’s accounting practices in EZLynx.

Some of the great new enhancements with the EZLynx Accounting 2.8 include the ability to apply branches to receipts, checks, and deposits. You also have the ability to assign specific bank accounts to individual branches, as well as the ability to do an interbranch payment between branches to aid in the clearing of accounts.

Highlights

  • New Permissions and Settings
  • Branch support for Receivables
  • Branch support for Payables
  • Branch support for General Ledger postings
  • Branch support for Reporting

Let’s See What’s New…

New Permissions and Settings

With the addition of branch support to EZLynx accounting, you are able to determine which users can have access to the various accounting functions at their respected branch or even at other branches. This allows for branch-to-branch interactions. The assignment of these permissions can be easily handled through the newly designed Users tab in the configuration section in accounting.

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We have also redesigned the System Settings tab by adding an ‘Agency’ tab (for the main branch to set system settings for all of their branches) and a ‘Branch’ tab for the individual branches in the organization to set their specific settings. On the ‘Agency’ tab, users at the Main Branch can set the overall settings for the organization.

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On the ‘Branch’ tab, the user is able to set the setting specific to the individual branches, like their logo, company information (addresses), settings for invoice emails and invoice memos.

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Branch Support for Receivables

You are now able to select branches for adding receipts, creating deposits, and receivable write-offs. For those in the organization with access to all branches, they will be able to select from all the branches in the organization. However, those in the organization who are limited to one branch, they will only see that branch in the dropdown. The same applies for the creation of receipts.

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We have also redesigned the Receipt and Deposit overview screen to allow you to filter the pages by branches to better organize your organizations transactions and postings.

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Branch Support for Payables

Branches have been integrated to our payable features in EZLynx and you are now able to select branches for AutoPay and adding of Checks. On the AutoPay screen, you are now able to filter the payable items by branches.

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When adding a check, you now have the ability to select which branch the check is being generated from and the branch bank account. If you have permission to view all branches, you will be able to select any of the branches in the organization. If your permission is limited to one branch, then you will only be able to select your specific branch.

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We have also added a branch column on the Check screen to make it easier for you to sort the organizations checks by branches. If you have access to all branches in your organization, then you will be able to view all the checks created in the organizations. If you are limited to one branch, then only checks for that particular branch will appear.

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Branch Support for General Ledger Postings

With this round of enhancements, you are also able to view branches on the GL posting screen in order to better organize the organizations branch postings. This also includes the addition of branch information on the GL exports in order for you to be able to integrate your branch configuration with QuickBooks. You are also able to create a journal entry for a single branch or you can create a journal entry for two branches to create clearing postings for interbranch payments.

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Branch Support for Reporting

No business would be complete without accurate reports. Accurate reports enable you to better manage and predict your organizations position in the market. With the addition of Branch Support for EZLynx Accounting, we have overhauled our reports in accounting to include branch filter. You are able to group posting in the reports by branches and even exclude some branches from reports in order to limit the data outputs. These enhancements will let you track productivity across your organization and gain a better insight as to how each of your locations are performing. The below reports now support Branch data:

  • Aged Receivables Report
  • Cash Receipts Report
  • Check Register Report
  • Deposit Summery Report
  • Direct Bill Cash Report
  • GL Postings Detail Report
  • Invoice Summery Report
  • Line Item Detail Report
  • Payables Worklist Report
  • Premium Trust Report
  • Production by Producer Report
  • Production by Writing Company Report
  • Trial Balance Report
  • Unapplied Cash Report
  • Undeposited Funds Report
  • User List Report

We are excited about what we have in store for EZLynx Accounting in the coming year.  As always, do not hesitate to give us your feedback!


EZLynx Retention Center adds new Commercial Support

The power of EZLynx Retention Center is now available for your commercial accounts! You will be able to use the same powerful tool that helps agencies efficiently retain customers through patented automation and analytical tools on your commercial renewals, helping to maximize productivity and boost revenue. Retention Center prompts renewal managers to review and communicate with commercial accounts prior to renewal without having to manage cumbersome spreadsheets. Quickly compare changes in the existing policies and the renewal offer with the click of a button.

  • Focused Strategy – Become proactive in your agency’s retention process to review every commercial account at renewal.
  • Expand Insight – Instant view into price and comparison of current policy and renewal to identify any changes.
  • Improved Customer Service – Communicate with every customer prior to the renewal to reinforce your agency’s value.
  • Boost Revenue – Each additional point of commercial retention corresponds to a specific dollar amount for each agency of increased profit.

Expiration List

The Expiration List automatically displays the upcoming commercial renewals. Each agency can customize the specific expiration timeline for personal and commercial separately. This allows the agency to easily proactively communicate with every customer prior to renewal to get the additional information needed to process next years policy.

EZLynx Retention Center - Expiration List

Quickly task out account reviews, remarketing, and account rounding activities to the correct person in your agency.

EZLynx Retention Center - Account Management

Renewal List

Patented automation helps you prioritize and analyze renewal offers on commercial policies. Proactively communicate with every customer at every renewal!

EZLynx Retention Center - Renewal List

If you already use EZLynx Retention Center and would like to participate in the Beta, or if this is the first you have heard about Retention Center and would like to learn about how it can help your agency, let us know below.


EZLynx Sales Center is Introduced at the AgentLynx User Conference

Sales Center Introduced at AgentLynx
Announced at the first annual EZLynx User Conference, EZLynx Sales Center will help agencies grow their business by streamlining the sales pipeline. This is a new product to our existing catalogue of agency solutions which is currently in limited beta release at this time. We are excited to give everyone that couldn’t attend AgentLynx this year a sneak peak at this much anticipated new product. If you think your agency would be a good fit to participate in our beta testing, be sure to fill out the form at the bottom of the page.

EZLynx Sales Center focuses on streamlining an agency’s lead management and sales pipeline for agencies who want to manage the full customer life-cycle, round accounts, and increase new business.

Sales Center will provide easy access to pipeline data and relevant information to assess the success of producers, marketing efforts and sales workflows. Quote information from EZLynx fills into Sales Center to provide the estimated value of each deal, and as it moves through the pipeline, the estimated value becomes more accurate, which allows a producer to forecast sales for month’s end.

EZLynx Sales Center - Opportunities

Sales Center makes it easy for supervisors to track producers progress to make sure they are on target to hit sales goals and maximize agency revenue. Sales dashboards allow owners or sales managers to quickly see close ratios for producers, deal aging, and make data driven decisions for the agency.

EZLynx Sales Center - Summary

Building on our ONE PLATFORM suite, Sales Center seamlessly leverages Rating Engine and Communication Center as you speed the applicant through the sales process.

We believe this product puts us yet another step beyond anything else that exists in our industry, and it continues our on-going mission to provide the complete customer life-cycle solution that agents need to remain productive, competitive, and to maximize their sales and retention potential!


The 2016 AgentLynx User Conference Comes to a Close

AgentLynxThank you to everyone that attended the 2016 AgentLynx User Conference! We were overwhelmed by the response we received from our users and carrier partners. We closed out the week feeling inspired and motivated for the future, and we hope the same is true for you.

There were some exciting announcements that we made at the conference, including our upcoming sales pipeline management tool EZLynx Sales Center, our Amazon Alexa integration, as well as various other details related to our plans for Communication Center, Client Center, and so much more. We’ve got 18 months until the next AgentLynx conference, so we’ve got a lot to do until then to make sure we deliver on everything we promised!

We Still Found Time for Fun

We wrapped up the conference with Disco Night, featuring a live band, great food, and a great time with our customers and colleagues. We will update the AgentLynx website with a full gallery and overview of the conference in the next few weeks, but here’s a quick look. Who knew agents could dance so well!

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Leverage EZLynx Reporting for your Email Marketing Campaigns

EZLynx Email CampaignsGet ready for our upcoming update to EZLynx Email Campaigns in the next few weeks, which includes a completely renovated process for segmenting your existing data for bulk email blasts.

We have been very pleased with the extensive enhancements that have been made so far this year to EZLynx Reporting; so much so that we felt the power of our reporting engine far outstripped our separate email campaign list builder.

As a result, this upcoming update will replace the existing list builder with Saved Reports from EZLynx Reporting. Take advantage of the powerful capabilities of our reporting engine to segment your data using both simple or highly complex filters. Once you have saved the report, it will be available for you to use within EZLynx Email Campaigns, which is part of our Communication Center bundle.

When you start a new campaign, your first step will be to name the campaign and select your recipients. You will be able to manually add individual recipients, select from your available Saved Reports, or choose from one of your static lists that you may have created from within EZLynx Retention Center or from the old list builder tool.

EZLynx Email Campaigns - Saved Reports

Your old lists will still be available to use, but any new or future lists will have to be created from within EZLynx Reporting as a Saved Report.

By making it possible to use our reporting engine to segment your data for Email Campaigns, we have brought a new level of accuracy to your email marketing. We are also excited about the new possibilities it brings, as there are many more filter options available in EZLynx Reporting than we had in our previous list builder.

This Update is Only the Beginning

While this update allows you to use your Saved Reports for campaigns, those campaigns are still using a static version of the report at the time you scheduled the campaign.  While not a big deal for short-term campaigns that are sent immediately, if your campaign has steps that are scheduled throughout the year, your list could get seriously out of date by the time the campaign finishes.

This has always been a problem for any email campaign service that relies on saved or uploaded lists, but we are excited to announce that our Email Campaigns update later this year is going to take your static lists and make them dynamic, allowing you to run Drip Campaigns using your Saved Reports and have those campaigns automatically update in real time before each email is sent.

Imagine being able to have a campaign that sends an email to your prospects every 3 months and automatically removes those recipients that become customers as a result. Schedule a recurring, long-term cross-sell campaign to all your customers that have an active homeowners policy but no auto policy and rest easy knowing that our system will automatically add or remove recipients to the campaign based on whether or not they still meet that criteria. The possibilities are endless, and this is just one of several very exciting enhancements planned for EZLynx Communication Center this year!


Certificate Self-Generation in EZLynx Client Center

In the next few days we will be rolling out a new feature that lets commercial insureds issue their own Certificates of Insurance from agency selected templates at any time, from anywhere, 24/7.  The client will be able to add a holder to a specific certificate template, generate the certificate for that holder, and print or save it accordingly.

Keep in mind, insureds will not be able to make any changes to the Certificate Master. Should they require changes or additional wording, the tool allows them to send the holder information to their agent and request their agent issue the certificate instead. This feature is a great fit for any agency that has heavy commercial volume and deal with trusted clients that frequently require certificates.

How Does it Work?

Once enabled for your agency, your administrator will be able to indicate the certificate types and carriers that they want to allow their agents and CSRs to enable for this feature. These are the global agency-wide rules that control how other users in your agency can use the feature.

Client Center Agent Settings Certificate Tab

For those users in your agency that have been enabled to use the feature, they will see a new option for newly created certificate masters (previously created certificate masters will not work). By selecting this option, users can enable a specific certificate master for a specific applicant, granting that applicant the ability to add their own holders using that master. It’s as simple as that.

Client Center Certificate Master Agent Facing Actions Dropdown

After an agent has enable a certificate master for a client, whenever that client logs into EZLynx Client Center, they will see a new line item in their Documents area giving them the option to add a new certificate holder.

Client Center Add New Holder

When the client clicks this option, we will walk them through a few questions to either add the holder, or else identify that their request requires additional follow-up by the agent. In all scenarios, the system will always notify the agent both inside EZLynx and by email whenever a client adds a new certificate holder.

Client Center Add New Holder Step 1

What’s Next?

If you currently have EZLynx Client Center and would like to have this feature enabled for your agency, please let us know below. We will need to know which user should be enabled as your Client Center administrator, as well as which user(s) should be given access to enable individual applicants for access to add holders. As you start to get a feel for how this works, please do not hesitate to return to this post and share your feedback below.


EZLynx Reporting Gets Supercharged, New Tools for Deeper Analysis

EZLynx, an industry-leading Agency Management System and Comparative Rating vendor for the independent insurance industry, announces new reporting tools to increase the usability of information provided within their ONE PLATFORM™ suite. These enhancements include optimizations and new features that will benefit agencies who want to take full advantage of their system to make intelligent, data-driven business decisions.

“Our primary goal in this update is to make the reports in EZLynx more intuitive. Agents should be able to get actionable information quickly and easily. These updates put EZLynx yet another step beyond our competition.” says John McKay, Director of Sales at EZLynx. “Think of it as management system reporting on steroids, now with the ability to schedule custom reports out to users or teams. This not only brings significant enhancements to the Reporting area in EZLynx, but the underlying technology will also allow us to bring the full force of our reporting capabilities directly into other areas of the product, including Retention Center® and Accounting.”

While the latest enhancements have placed an increased focus on usability, there are also several new important features. “We are very excited about the report scheduling tool,” McKay continues. “With this feature, agents can have reports scheduled to automatically run on a recurring basis. This should save a lot of time for people who run a specific report on a regular basis. In addition, being able to slice and dice the data is a request EZLynx has now fulfilled by way of a Master Report. This will give agents full control of almost every field inside of EZLynx and allow users to apply filters, sorting, charts, paging, and groupings to create custom reports which users can save and run as needed for future use.”

Let’s Take a Closer Look at EZLynx Reporting

The Applicant Summary Report shows agents demographic information on their current policy holders. This report includes valuable information like Active Policies and Average Premium per Customer as well as summary statistics on gender, education level, and marital status.

EZLynx Reporting - Applicant Summary Report

Coming Soon to EZLynx Reporting

The ability to Email a report to your colleagues without leaving the reports page is coming soon and will help with large files that take a long time to export. With this feature you can have the report emailed to you and your coworkers so that you can continue working while the export process runs.

EZLynx Reporting - Email a Report

Scheduled Reports is a new feature that will enable a report to run on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. You will no longer have to log in to the reports page to run the same report each month; simply have it scheduled to be delivered to your inbox!

EZLynx Reporting - Schedule a Report

These changes are only the beginning. As a company, we are committed to continually improving our product based on the needs of our customers, and that commitment extends to Reporting where we have a grand vision that spans far past 2016. From new reports that show unsold business, to visualizations showing policy trends over time, Reporting has an exciting future at EZLynx!


Powerful Commercial Enhancements are Coming to EZLynx Soon

We are excited to begin live testing of some powerful commercial features in EZLynx. If you’re interested in participating in the BETA, you can let us know below.

Commercial Package Policy Support

Manual entry only

Maintain more accurate policy information and improve reporting capabilities by truly grouping lines of business within a one single package policy.Newest new Add new Policy

Let’s take a look at the details

When adding a manual personal or commercial package policy in EZLynx, the user can now add the individual policies included in the package.

After selecting either personal or commercial package as the main Line of Business, add any number of individual LOBs and their premiums as you’d like.

The Add & Edit Policy feature prompts the user through a series of tabs for adding detailed policy information; to reduce data entry keying, some tabs gather information that can be shared across multiple policies.

Add new Policy window

Tabs to collect information shared between all policies in the package; for less data entry

Newest Newer Comm Policy PKg

Commercial Applications

The ability to add commercial applications in EZLynx is a huge, time-saving tool for agencies that write commercial business. Complete the application once in EZLynx, then easily create necessary ACORD form for submission to multiple carriers.

Take an application and quickly transform it into a policy or take a policy and create an application from the data.

Comm App

Commercial Proposals

From a Commercial applicant’s Documents tab, click the Add button and select Quote Proposal. Ability to select one manual policy from each LOB, then click Add Quote Proposal. The feature will be expanded to include downloaded policies in the near future.

Supported LOBs:

  • Commercial Auto
  • General Liability
  • Commercial Property
  • More coming soon

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Comm Prop LOB

EZLynx is committed to enhancing our commercial support this year. We’d love to get your feedback!