Adaptability is a cornerstone of launching a successful business.
Without that — and a willingness to listen — ClaimKit CEO Chris Cheatham said he would’ve been pursuing a much smaller market with his company’s tech product.
ClaimKit, which created a document management system for insurance claims professionals, recently pivoted its model to create a collaborative contract review and analytics tool called RiskGenius. The product incorporates a variety of contract review tools into a web-based platform that streamlines the process for clients. It also creates a library that allows clients to research their completed contracts.
“Good technology doesn’t replace people, it empowers people,” Cheatham said. “I know people throughout the industry and those people are my friends. Literally, I want to make their job more enjoyable.”
As a result of his company’s pivot, Cheatham said larger clients such as CBIZ Insurance Group and Brush Creek Partners have been lining up for contracts. Cheatham added that his working relationship with CBIZ has been instrumental in creating RiskGenius.
“That’s the most helpful part of the partnership with CBIZ,” he said. “Understanding how they go through their process, getting into the software and having them point out places that it can be better so we can focus on building out those features.”
Erik Hansey, regional placement leader at CBIZ, said that the insurance industry has been slow to adapt to new technology. Hansey added that a generational gap amongst peers in the industry — those under 35 and over 55 — has prompted a more traditional approach.
Despite deep-rooted conventions, Claimkit’s versatility was able to win over CBIZ, Hansey said.
“It’s very hard to get our industry to do something new, to do something creative or to support local entrepreneurs who are coming up with something like this,” he said. “When I met with Chris, I knew this was something that would begin to scratch that itch and continue to evolve to make our jobs more enjoyable while still providing that same level of service that we’re accustomed to providing our customers.”
Founded in 2011, ClaimKit raised $940,000 in its seed round and now has five employees. Cheatham said he plans to hire up to ten employees in the next year.