Welcome to 2020! We’re kicking it off right by bringing you 20 voices germaine to the California Broker world. Of course, this is not a ranking or top 20 list. We do think our contributors are tops, but we’ve merely arranged the pieces in alphabetical order by last name. You’ll see that we have some longer contributions and some short Q&As and conversations. Our aim was to mix it up—and invite a few fresh faces to contribute along with a few regulars. Read on for what’s on these folks’ minds for 2020….
A conversation with David Reid, founder and CEO, Ease
In 2015 when benefits administration and HR software provider Ease launched, the company counted 151 competitors in California. “And now we can count our competitors on one hand,” says CEO David Reid. To say the least, it’s been a fast moving market in the enrollment and benefits admin solutions space. While so many companies didn’t make it, Reid says what’s emerged is good for everybody involved.
“What we’ve witnessed is the emergence of standards,” he explained. “I think carriers were really waiting to see who the credible aggregators would end up being. We feel fortunate that Ease is one of those. And now that we’re here, 2020 promises to be nothing short of a watershed year for paperless enrollment and administration.” In fact, Reid goes so far as to deem it, “The Year of Paperless.”
Should brokers be wary of tech taking their jobs though? Reid, a former broker, says producers who focus on being the trusted advisor and consultant to their client’s business shouldn’t be concerned. “Employers still need that expert—the person who can answer the questions for them, the person who stays current with the laws, the person who presents the most relevant products to a sometimes very diverse employee population,” he says emphatically. And brokers are also being called on to educate employers and employees about being smarter health care consumers, which Reid predicts may play an increasingly important role in the health insurance and employee benefits ecosystem.
“Tech should help you do all this more easily,” Reid notes. “Tech will simply get you away from the B.S. that comes with the business so you can focus more on strategy and sales.”
— Victoria Alexander