In order to extend its reach to brokers, Fortis Benefits Insurance Co. (Kansas City) has chosen BenefitPoint, Inc.'s (San Francisco) employee benefits distribution system.
"One might think that such a system would add to the already existing condition of commoditization of products," says Fortis' Bud Guthrie, executive vice president, of the system that allows brokers to enter their RFPs, and carriers to quote on them. "The BenefitPoint system,however, has a feature whereby each carrier has the opportunity to present its value proposition," he adds. "That's very important for us, because we consider ourselves a value-added company."
Although the BenefitPoint solution was the most comprehensive of any that Fortis evaluated, according to Guthrie, the insurer is looking at other vendors, as well. "Is BenefitPoint going to be the only solution that we utilize?" asks Guthrie. "As a carrier we have to be able to meet the broker's need. If there is another way that they'd rather obtain quotes, we have to be prepared for that, too. At the moment, the BenefitPoint solution seems to be the system with the most traction."