Applied Net is the largest technology gathering of independent insurance agents and brokers in the world. To be held at the Aria Resort in Las Vegas October 14 – 17, Applied Net 2019 explores how the rapid pace of change and opportunity being created by technology in our industry best positions you to thrive in the digital revolution of insurance.
This year’s conference promises to be our best one yet and you don’t want to miss all the excitement we have in store, including insightful educational sessions, newfound industry innovations, countless networking opportunities, industry-changing announcements and once-in-a-lifetime evening events.
To give you an idea of what your Applied Net experience could be like, we sat down with Kristin Thelen, Commercial Lines coordinator at Mason Insurance Agency Inc. and three-time Applied Net attendee, to discuss her favorite parts of the conference and why she recommends attending Applied Net 2019.
Applied Communications: Thanks for taking the time to speak with us, Kristin. To start, can you give us a brief introduction to your agency and role there.
Kristin Thelen: We are a P&C agency with 11 users located in Mason, MI. We take pride in being a small town agency that provides a personalized experience to each of our clients.
AC: Appreciate the introduction. Let’s switch gears and talk about Applied Net. What is your favorite part of the conference?
KT: The best part of the conference is the networking opportunities that you are presented with. You meet a variety of people – new users, seasoned users, vendors, consultants, Applied Systems employees, Applied Client Network Board Members and Chapter Leaders – all of who bring something different to the table. As your network grows so does your product knowledge and experience.
AC: How has your business benefited from attending Applied Net?
KT: My agency has benefited tremendously from Applied Net. We bring back so much information and new ideas. Our improved efficiency is the greatest benefit. We learn how to streamline our processes and incorporate new product offerings, such as Applied CSR24®, a cloud-based insurance customer self-service software, and Applied MobileInsured™, a custom branded mobile application, into our agency’s culture, making our clients experience as enjoyable and easy as it can be.
AC: Do you have an example of content that you’ve brought back and implemented into your agency?
KT: The most valuable content that I brought back from conference was the ability to upgrade our proposals and form letters. To fully understand the merge fields and how they work in summaries, proposals and letters made our communications more time efficient and easier to incorporate into the workflow. The enhanced look of layered colors, use of tables and a more polished appearance was just an added bonus.
AC: Can you tell us more about the feeling of community you get from Applied Net?
KT: The atmosphere at Applied New is energetic, enthusiastic and eager. The community of insurance professionals that come together for four days of learning and networking is like no other. Every attendee is there for a common purpose – to make themselves and their agency better. Whether it’s from a technological standpoint or educational perspective, we all share one common goal to be the best and help one another become the best.
AC: Do you feel that Applied Net is a good place to discover new technology?
KT: For sure! It’s the one place you can hear first hand what has changed, been enhanced and what is forth coming directly from Applied Systems CEO, Reid French. The exhibit hall is another great source of information that Applied Net offers. Vendors from all over are there to showcase products that can help make what you do easier.
AC: Do you feel like Applied Net pays for itself in terms of how it helps your agency?
KT: 110% – the return on our investment is continuous. Being able to meet individuals and use them as ongoing resources, being hands-on at the Applied Systems booth and preparing for the changes we know are coming keeps our operations perpetuating.
AC: What other parts of the conference do you enjoy?
KT: Everything about conference is enjoyable. You can tell that a lot of time, effort and care is put into planning this event. From the session tracks to the evening events, it’s four days of learning, networking and fun. However, if I had to pick one, it would be presenting. I had the honor of presenting at Applied Net 2018. The opportunity to share what I know with other users and provide them with new ways of using their systems was incredible.
AC: How many times have you attended Applied Net and why do you continue to come back year after year?
KT: I have attended Applied Net the last three years. Every year offers something different, whether it is the venue, the exhibitors, the session tracks or the presenters. I guarantee you will walk away with new knowledge and ways to improve your agency’s processes.
AC: Would you recommend this conference to your peers? If so, why?
KT: Absolutely! Anything you want to learn, anyone you would like to meet, and what the future may hold is all provided to you at Applied Net. It’s a great opportunity to learn, meet new and passionate people, and even have a little fun.