Introduction to Agent Performance Management


After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Summarize the features and benefits of APM
  • Define the key concepts of APM

Introduction to Agent Performance Management

Agent Performance Management, or APM, is a cloud based system that provides a complete solution to the complex sales channels common in the insurance industry.

Compensating the entities involved in selling and managing insurance policies involves the incorporation of many different types of data. Let’s start by taking a look at some of the challenges faced by a typical insurance carrier. As we go through this course, you’ll learn how APM helps its users face these challenges.

  1. Insurance Companies have complex sales channels that can number over 100,000 producers.
  2. Producers can be internal or external.
  3. Assignments to customers can be direct or indirect.
  4. Producer hierarchies can be quite complex, with up to 9 levels involving hundreds of producers.
  5. The same producer may be a member of multiple hierarchies.

Not only do insurance carriers often have sales channels that number over 100,000 producers, their sales channels can be very complex. Some producers may be direct employees, while others are independent agents or agencies. Relationships can be made up of multiple, complex hierarchies between the carrier, brokers, wholesalers, agencies, and agents.

APM eliminates the need to maintain multiple and independent sources of information needed to manage and compensate its producers. Some key points include customer and policy data, credentials such as licenses, appointments and continuing education, and relationships between payees.

Features of APM

To understand the importance of the features of APM, it helps to have an idea of how insurance agencies and agents work together and with their carriers.

There are three general types of relationships among agents and agencies: sole proprietors, which are identifed by an individual tax ID such as a Social Security Number; independent agents writing under a business entity, which are identified with a corporate tax ID but are still considered individuals; and agents who write under a larger agency.

Naturally, when an agent sells a policy to a customer, they are compensated for that sale in the form of a commission. The amount of this commission varies based on a number of factors, such as the contract with the carrier, the type of policy, or the type of customer. The commission may also be split, or shared, with other payees; for example, if more than one agent was involved in the sale, or if an agency or other payee has a relationship with the agent who made the sale.

As you can imagine, this is only a very basic overview of the complexities of agent performance management. Some of the features of APM that help manage these complexities include:

  • Producer Management
  • Payee Relationships
  • Compliance
  • Integration
  • Customers and Ownership
  • Commission Schedules
  • Performance Metrics
  • Correspondence

SafeCare Insurance

As we go through this course, we will be exploring a fictional scenario to help you understand the various concepts. Let’s start by meeting some of the people and business involved in the transaction.

SafeCare Insurance is a carrier located in Alabama, USA. They provide a wide range of insurance products for both individual and group coverage, including home and auto coverage and life insurance. You will see us refer to home and auto coverage as Property & Casuality, or P&C, throughout this course.

SafeCare has implemented APM to enable the management and compensation for its many employees and independent agents and agencies located throughout the USA and Canada.

Alexander Smith is the system administrator for SafeCare Insurance. His job is to manage the APM environment, do any customizations to the system, maintain security groups and users, and ensure the sytem is working to meet the needs of SafeCare.

Saber Management is a local, independent insurance agency that is authorized to sell SafeCare’s products. They have 20 agents located throughout Southern California.

Susan and Frank are a young couple who just bought a new car and are looking for a new agent to handle their insurance coverage.

Susan’s friend recommends they speak to her agent, Deborah Willis, who works for the Saber Management Agency.

Deborah meets with Susan and Frank, and explains the various options available to cover their auto. During the conversation, they tell her they will be buying a house soon and are looking for homeowners insurance coverage as well. Deborah is happy to tell them that SafeCare offers great deals on combined home and auto policies.

Susan and Frank decide this is a perfect package for them, and Deborah writes their auto policy. Six months later, they add on a homeowners policy for their new home!

SafeCare will calculate the amount of Deborah’s commission based on a number of items, including the line of business (Property & Casualty, or P&C), the location (Southern California), and the customer type (Individual). In addition, Deborah will earn an additional bonus for selling a policy bundle.

Key Concepts of APM Enterprise

APM is an enterprise level system with many features and capabilities. As we go through this course, we will be covering many of these. Here are a few of the key concepts and functionalities; having a familiarity with each of these will help you with a successful implementation.


The Payout refers to two things: the task that is run after posting of all transaction files for a specific period is completed, and the record that is produced by the Payout task. The payout process consists of a series of subtasks that must be completed successfully for the payout to be finalized. The payout record contains everything needed by either the Accounts Payable or Payroll team to process the payment to the producer; for example, the producer name and address, bank routing information, and of course the amount of the payment.

License and Compliance

The License and Compliance (L&C) portal contains information on how a broker's License, Appointment, Contract, Insurance, and Background Check should impact the broker's commission payment. These rules are established at the Certificate of Authority (from here on referred to as Certificate), Line of Business (LOB), and Product level.

Why is this important? Let’s go back to our earlier example of Deborah Willis. If Deborah was licensed to sell auto insurance through SafeCare but not homeowners insurance, she would not be compensated for the homeowners policy she sold to Susan and Frank. Instead, the commission would go to another producer in her upline; most likely another licensed agent.


Versioning refers to the concept of defining start and end dates for policies, relationships or other entities that are date oriented.To ensure accurate commissions, managing change to producer and other data over time is crucial. For example, if a producer achieves a new license or takes a required education course, the effective date of the activity can have a big effect on their commission. To manage this, many types of records have an Effective Date and an Expiration Date field. Adding an expiration data to a record allows you to add a new version that includes updated information without creating a new record.

Groovy Expressions

APM Enterprise uses Groovy for all in-application scripting. Groovy is an object oriented scripting language based on the Java platform. If you already know Java, you’ll find that Groovy is very similar.

In this course, we will provide any Groovy expressions you will need, so you won’t need to know how to create expressions; however, if you would like to learn more, the Expressions Reference Guide contains a guide to getting started.

Statements and Reports

APM provides several reporting features to configure and use for analysis, auditing, and much more. Statements are static reports designed to return payout data for a single payee, while reports are optimal for returning historical sales, process, and other high-level data that is useful for non-payee users such as financial analysts.


In this lesson, we covered some of the challenges brought on by the complexities of the insurance industry for its carriers, and named the features of APM designed to address these challenges. We also met the players that will be featured as we go through various concepts and exercises.

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