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Evan Collart

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Evan and Eric: Charting New Heights as Pioneers in Tailored Workers’ Comp Programs

Evan Collart, Co-founder of PEO Advisors, is a leader in the Professional Employer Organization (PEO) industry, with an impressive career spanning over 20 years. He started his professional journey in a small brokerage in Delray Beach, FL, where he learned every aspect of the PEO process through a hands-on approach. This early exposure gave him a unique and comprehensive understanding of the complexities of the PEO industry and all that comes with it.

Evan was not satisfied with just being a participant. He co-founded and sold multiple, seven-figure PEO brokerages, making him a seasoned entrepreneur and visionary in the industry. His entrepreneurial skills are not limited to business ventures. He also hosts a weekly radio show, “Everything PEO!” on Money Talk 1010am, where he shares his insights and opinions on the industry.

Evan Collart’s expertise goes beyond the airwaves and boardrooms. He authored “Workers’ Comp Made Easy,” a comprehensive guide that shows his commitment to simplifying complex PEO & Workers’ Comp topics for businesses that need PEO services.

What makes Evan stand out is his dedication to making a positive difference for businesses. His experience as a MTG Broker inspired him during the post-9/11 refi-boom, where he saw the value of helping at-risk clients. He moved to the PEO space with a deep sense of the importance of providing affordable coverage to save businesses from closing down. He is passionate about helping entrepreneurs succeed and ensuring the survival and growth of their companies.

Partner in Vision: Eric Chakirelis

Eric Chakirelis is a co-founder of PEO Advisors, a leading company in the PEO industry that provides professional employer services to companies of all sizes. With over 13 years of experience in the PEO industry, Eric has developed innovative methods to streamline sales processes and grow the business. In addition, he is also the co-creator and producer of Everything PEO!, a weekly radio show airing on Money Talk 1010am.

Eric’s entrepreneurial spirit was evident from an early age when he started investing in real estate and established a real estate appraisal firm. After the real estate crash in 2008, he relocated to Florida and worked in the health insurance industry for two years, where he was fascinated by the residual pay structure. However, he soon realized that the PEO industry suited his skills and interests better, and he teamed up with Evan to launch PEO Advisors in 2010. Since then, Eric has been a driving force behind the success and growth of PEO Advisors and a visionary partner in the PEO industry.

Multifaceted Leadership Journey at PEO Advisors

Evan plays a pivotal role at PEO Advisors, leading the company’s sales and revenue generation. He oversees a team of eight sales representatives, ensuring their efficiency and effectiveness in growing the company. His commitment to excellence is evident in the company’s achievement in 2012, when PEO Advisors won the prestigious title of “Insurance Office of the Year” in Dunedin, FL.

Evan also hosts “Everything PEO!”—a weekly radio show that covers the latest trends and topics in the PEO industry. The show airs every Wednesday at 6 pm on three radio stations in the Tampa Bay area and live streams on various social media platforms. Through this show, Evan showcases his industry knowledge and insights and educates and engages the audience on the benefits and challenges of PEO services.

Eric, on the other hand, leads the operational aspects of the business, such as contracting, commissions, and IT. He ensures that the team has all the tools and resources needed to run the business efficiently and effectively. He also supports and guides the team in any situation and makes day-to-day decisions with Evan to ensure the smooth running of the company.

Eric and Evan have a balanced and effective leadership dynamic, where they leverage their respective strengths and collaborate on the strategic direction of the company. Their teamwork and dedication have helped the company achieve impressive milestones, such as being the largest broker at three of the PEOs that the company represents, since 2020.

In 2022, Manage HR Magazine recognized Evan and Eric’s outstanding leadership and performance by awarding PEO Advisors as the ‘2022 Top 10 PEO Service Provider.’ This accolade reflects their ability to steer PEO Advisors to the forefront of industry excellence and innovation.

Accelerating Workers’ Compensation Coverage with Unrivaled Speed and Expertise

PEO Advisors is a leading mono-line agency that specializes in workers’ compensation coverage. They collaborate with other insurance agents and agencies to help at-risk clients secure affordable workers’ comp coverage, regardless of excessive claims, higher-risk industries, high-experience mods, non-renewals, etc. As one of the largest agencies of its kind in the country, PEO Advisors has carved a niche in this field.

PEO Advisors has an edge over the competition because of its knowledge of the PEO industry and its efficiency in paperwork. Its attention to detail enables it to complete deals faster than anyone else. In the PEO industry, speed is essential for placing coverage for clients. Time kills deals, so PEO Advisors follows a streamlined approach that relies on proper processes and procedures. Everyone on the team knows their part and can effectively complete their tasks and keep the deals moving at a fast pace.

PEO Advisors stands out for its commitment to speed in placing coverage for at-risk clients. It consistently places coverage within 24 hours, unlike the industry average of 1–2 weeks. It achieves this by using its extensive preferred PEO network, which provides efficient and reliable solutions. This agility is crucial when PEO Advisors step in to help insurance agents who are stuck in the underwriting process with workers’ comp carriers, reducing the risk of last-minute declinations.

The company’s expertise shows in its ability to intervene quickly, especially when clients are 48 hours away from losing coverage or facing a coverage gap—a situation that the industry dislikes. PEO Advisors not only prevents coverage gaps but also understands the industry complexities and the potential challenges that a coverage gap can create for future insurance needs.

Tailored Solutions Across Industries

PEO Advisors primarily focuses on heavy blue-collar industries such as construction trades, trucking and transport, manufacturing, agriculture, and landscaping. They also serve the hospitality sector, including hotels, restaurants, event planning, staffing, and more. This broad spectrum shows PEO Advisors’ commitment to providing tailored solutions for various industries.

To cater to its diverse client base, PEO Advisors aligns itself with PEOs that can address the needs of white-collar, blue-collar, and gray-collar companies. This partnership ensures that they can offer comprehensive solutions to their agency partners across the country.

The company’s dedication to client satisfaction shows in its streamlined onboarding process. Feedback focuses on this crucial phase, where owners sign service agreements and employees complete documentation, often using a paperless and efficient system. PEO Advisors has played a key role in modernizing these processes, working with PEOs to implement e-hire packets and DocuSign solutions. This forward-thinking approach has improved their clients’ operations and experience.

Strategic Training Initiatives: PEO Advisors’s Solution to Workforce Challenges

Evan & Eric faced a significant challenge that many business owners and entrepreneurs share—the difficult task of finding skilled and dedicated staff. They implemented a strategy based on a crucial element: training. Knowing the importance of investing in skill development, both Evan & Eric prioritized ongoing training initiatives to cultivate a high-performing team.

PEO Advisors adopted a distinctive approach that involved an extended shadowing process for their representatives in the field, exceeding industry averages. This commitment to a long and hands-on training period showed Evan & Eric’s dedication to overcoming the hurdles in the PEO industry, which has a high 90% failure rate on average. PEO Advisors actively assisted representatives in the field and provided support throughout the account-closing process. Evan & Eric positioned PEO Advisors to achieve consistent success in an industry known for its complexities and pitfalls.

Transformative Shifts and Challenges in Florida’s Workers’ Comp Market

PEO Advisors has observed a transformative shift in the workers’ comp market, especially in Florida, where rates have decreased by 78% over the past 18 years. The expected drop of another 15.4% in 2024 will mark some of the lowest Workers’ Comp rates in the state’s history. This creates optimism among business owners for cheaper premiums, but the market is also very challenging.

The rate reductions have caused several insurance carriers to leave the state, creating a shortage of affordable solutions in the Standard Market. The carriers that remain have stricter underwriting guidelines, more Consent to Rates (CTR) assessments and higher case declination rates. This situation has pushed many businesses into the PEO space as a strategic move to secure workers’ comp coverage in 2024 and beyond. The shift to PEOs reflects a pragmatic response from businesses that need viable and stable solutions in the changing landscape of workers’ comp insurance in Florida.

Strategic Milestone with Peak HR Launch

In 2024, both Evan Collart & Eric Chakirelis will position PEO Advisors for a groundbreaking milestone by launching their own PEO, Peak HR. This development will strengthen the service offering of PEO Advisors and mark a pivotal moment in their career-long dreams.

Peak HR will enhance PEO Advisors’ capabilities, allowing them to broker PEO services nationally and place strong and moderate-risk accounts into their proprietary PEO. This move will empower PEO Advisors to control the pricing for clients and increase the speed and efficiency of service delivery.

Peak HR will represent the realization of a vision that Evan & Eric nurtured over their 16-year partnership in brokering PEO services. Having a proprietary PEO will align with their commitment to innovation and adaptability in the ever-evolving PEO landscape. With doors opening in February 2024, Evan & Eric’s plans for the company will revolve around using the advantages of Peak HR to provide enhanced and tailored solutions to clients and maintain a strong local presence. This expansion will signify a new chapter for the company and reinforce its commitment to excellence, innovation, and meeting the needs of businesses across diverse industries.

Unique Approach to Work, Family, and Business

Evan and Eric share a common vision of work, life, and family that transcends the conventional notion of work-life balance. They call it a holistic work-life-family balance. They emphasize the importance of making time for family and have created a unique familial atmosphere at PEO Advisors. Several family members work for the organization, strengthening the familial connection within the organization.

Evan and Eric understand the importance of a self-sufficient business model that enables the company to function autonomously. This operational maturity helps the company scale and gives them the flexibility to prioritize family commitments. Evan is a father to a 17-year-old son and a National Honor Society member who is preparing for a career in the PEO business. Evan teaches him the value of a strong work ethic and supports his family’s aspirations. Eric finds his balance with his family, who keep him working hard and also give him the relief and time away from the office he needs.

Outside work, Evan and Eric like to stay active and enjoy various activities with their families. Evan and his son exercise at the gym, bike on county trails, and attend Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Lightning games. Eric and his partner bike, swim, walk, and do other things to get them outdoors. They love spending time with their dogs too, who love the pool. This intentional blending of family time and shared interests shows their commitment to maintaining a balanced and fulfilling life.

Elevating Success in Insurance Sales

Evan and Eric have valuable advice for aspiring leaders who want to enter the insurance sector. They share their insights and tips based on their experience and success in the industry.

Evan emphasizes the importance of loving the sales process and being persistent and tenacious. He explains that these sales often require seven, eight, or nine phone calls, or sometimes even more. However, the average sales professional stops calling after two or three attempts. He says, “Get ready to grind, but if you do get over that hump, it is the most rewarding industry in the world!”

On the other hand, Eric stresses the importance of networking and learning from industry leaders. He says, “It’s not only what you know, but also who you know. Find ways to connect with the industry leaders. You can learn so much from these successful people. They may open opportunities for you to set your business apart from the rest!”

Quote

“Often sales are made on 7th, 8th or 9th phone calls and sometimes even 10+… The reality is the average sales professional stops calling after 2-3 attempts.”

Also Read: The Most Prominent Leaders in the Insurance Industry, 2024

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