eFORFEITURE MANAGER OFFERS A SMOOTH & FAST WAY
TO VIEW FORFEITURES IN THE AIA SYSTEM
By Sue Doyle
For the eight years Bill Pastor has worked in bail bonds, he has relied entirely on paper, pens and overstuffed filing cabinets to get the job done.
But those days are over for the Houston man who decided to switch to working online through AIA’s website after attending a workshop on electronic services during the recent Southern Midwest Region Agents Conference.
Seeing how the system easily searches copies of reports and other documents, Pastor was convinced to make the transition, especially after learning that using electronic services also gives him immediate shipment of replacement powers instead of waiting for AIA to receive his report by mail.
“This will take me out of my comfort zone a little bit,” said Pastor. “But it will save me paper, and I will get my powers quicker than with the other way.”
The fast supply power service that Pastor relishes comes from eReport — a feature through AIA’s website that lets agents fill out and submit reports online. Through eReport, powers are shipped the same day on reports submitted before 3:00 p.m. P.S.T. The service also enables agents to electronically pay for bonds.
Reports are saved and can be accessed anytime through eFiling Cabinet, which searches documents by bond number, date range and comments. To access these documents, agents first need to register at www.aiasurety.com. The service is free to AIA agents.
eForfeiture Manager, a new service announced by AIA at its three-day conference in Dallas, Texas, offers a smooth and fast way for agents to view the list of open forfeitures in the AIA system.
Launched in November, the service lets agents search listings, check status and communicate any changes or updates in real-time. It’s a one-stop shop for agents who can find data in one place, and it replaces forfeiture status reports. (continued below)
“This is a window into your data at the company, and that’s more of what AIA is working on – making the data that we have more available to you,” said Robert Kersnick, AIA Chief Operating Officer.
The transition to working online eliminates heaps of paperwork and jam-packed filing systems that some in the industry have worked with nearly all their careers. In fact, some agents say there are 25 filing cabinets standing in their offices. Naturally, the transition from a paper-filled office to a paperless one can be daunting for some agents.
But after eight years in this business, Shereakia Wells, a Dallas agent, has decided that it was time to lean more on electronic services to get the job done faster. So this year, she’s gradually become more involved with AIA’s website and integrates more of her work there each day. The website keeps all her information in one place, which comes in handy when she’s sitting down to business.
“It helps you know what to talk about when it’s time to talk,” Wells said. “It’s awesome not to worry about losing stuff, because it’s all online.”
It also facilitates communications between agents and the surety by giving them the ability to see what’s happening inside AIA’s computer system. “That access helps businesses work more efficiently,” said Kersnick.
“Our business is a mobile business. We’re working 24 hours a day,” Kersnick said. “It’s important to have systems available to provide information and help us work… whenever we need it.”
While some agents are just wading into working online, others have already jumped right in.
Looking for ways to make his offices run smoother, Bryan Nester created his own in-house software. Still, the Vancouver-based agent continues to search for ways to build up his software system and wipe out any unnecessary clerical steps along the way. In the end, his business runs faster than his competitors’.
“We are trying to get as far away from paper and redundancy as possible,” Nester said.