SimplyInsured Uses eSignatures To Redefine An Industry
Online service integrates the HelloSign API to deliver on the promise of fast, easy and paperless small business health insurance.
Launched in 2012, SimplyInsured offers a simple, no-hassle solution for small businesses to sign up for health insurance. Their streamlined health insurance manager is 100% online, explains the process in plain English, and saves companies an average of $500-$1000 per year, per employee.
While signing up for health insurance takes a lot of paperwork, SimplyInsured makes the process easy and frictionless. They analyze thousands of insurance policies to find the best coverage, price, and value for a customer’s personalized situation. When the right policy is found, all the necessary paperwork is handled online and without paper.
The key challenge for SimplyInsured was how to bring a traditionally offline, paperwork intensive process and make it completely digital. Signing up for health insurance requires multiple signatures, initials and detailed personal information to be provided across several documents. The average sign up process requires between 5-20 signatures alone. They recognized early on in the development process that taking the workflow completely digital, without a single step happening offline, would require a powerful eSignature solution.
“eSignature is really core to making our product work,” said Vivek Shah, Co-Founder and CEO of SimplyInsured. “The consumer wants an easy 100% online seamless experience. If we can’t give them that, if they have to physically sign something or use a poorly designed eSignature experience, then SimplyInsured wouldn’t be delivering on its value proposition. Everything we do is powered by signatures. eSignature is a core piece of infrastructure for our business.”
With eSignature being so core to their offering, the team initially considered building its own in-house solution.
“We did research and talked to people who had built their own home grown eSignature platform in house. They told us it would take three months to build something functional, or seven months for something robust. That’s an eternity in developer time, especially during the early stages of a startup. Then you have ongoing operational overhead to consider. Time was the biggest factor in the decision to purchase a solution,” Vivek Shah said.
Having decided that an eSignature provider was the best use of their resources, the SimplyInsured team honed in on a list of possible providers and used a strict set of criteria to make their decision. First, they wanted an eSignature experience that was user friendly. Second they needed a clean, modern, and well maintained API that would be easy to integrate with the SimplyInsured product.
SimplyInsured started a comprehensive search for a solution. “We looked at the customer -facing (non-API) products of all the eSignature companies, big and small, and thought they just looked terrible. Most offered poorly rendered documents that just looked bad,” said Vivek.
Next the team dove into the API documentation of the most popular eSignature companies. “We looked at all the top-tier providers and HelloSign had the cleanest API by far. With all the others it was too difficult to build what we wanted. For example, the competitors’ Ruby Gems were overly complicated and not well maintained,” said Vivek.
In the end, SimplyInsured selected the HelloSign API. “We looked at every solution and HelloSign was a hundred times better than any other eSignature API. [HelloSign] provides an amazing software driven ability to automate the eSignature process,” said Vivek.
All the due diligence the team did up front paid dividends as they found integrating the HelloSign API incredibly fast and easy.
“We did our integration in just four days. It was really quick. And the core library we built in those four days continues to drive our business today. When compared to the seven months it would have taken to build our own solution, it become obvious HelloSign was the right choice,” said Vivek.
Another benefit of working with HelloSign is the ability to rely on their team of eSignature experts whenever SimplyInsured has questions. “When we’ve needed help, the HelloSign support team has been incredibly responsive,” said Vivek.
Customer feedback has been great as well. Many new customers say they didn’t realize completing health insurance paperwork could be that simple. Several have mentioned that they were happy the process didn’t use paper.
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