The term master agency is prevalent most widely in the telecom industry. This term applies to any firm or organization which has a direct contract with multiple telecom carriers. Generally speaking, a master agent operates with specific quotas. Therefore, to help sell the products and solutions to the customers his main task and responsibility is to build a family or network of subagents. This, in a nutshell, is the description of a master agency. More often than not, a master agent or master agency never really gets into direct selling relationships with the customers. This role is left to the subagents.
However, a master agency has to execute certain roles and responsibilities pertaining to “back office” operations for the customer and the subagents. These operations can include lead generation, drawing up price quotes, helping in tracking the orders and keeping track of the commissions that are payable to the network of agents. Of course there are a few master agencies that are getting into the direct selling mode as well but this may detract from the primary role of support to the network of agents. Different master agents offer different kinds of commissions and incentive programs. Some of them are pretty unique and therefore famous in the telecom industry!
Telecom companies normally choose a single and well-established master agent. But this is not a hard and fast rule. The one point of differentiation between a master agency and sub agents is the fact that the former should provide a tangible service. This service can be a game changer when it comes to enhancing value in partnering with a master agency. This value proposition or service can be delivered across aspects and skills such as financial planning, training and even leadership management. All these skills are to be applied to fostering the network of agents in a particular region.
For instance, a master agency should be able to offer benefits when it comes to an independent agent signing up with them. These benefits can be delivered by way of market analysis, information on emerging technologies and even technical support for the clutch of products and services that need to be sold to the customer. A master agent will also keep track of the commissions and incentives that are payable to his agents and pay them on time. Considering the fact that the telecom industry is marked by a high level of sophisticated competition, a master agency can make the difference between success and failure for a sub agent under his umbrella.
If one were to sum up the responsibilities of a master agency then it would fall under two criteria – knowledge and financial benefits. The knowledge base would have to cover job orientation, refresher courses, orientation for new agents and constant communication about the industry. These communications are helpful not just to the subagent but also to the client. Armed with the latest information on the industry, the subagent can put together a far more effective solution for his clients. The financial benefits of course encompass incentives for the subagents and contracts with all leading telecom carriers.
James is a writer and blogger with 5 years experience.