With insurance jobs projected to grow 10% by 2028 — faster than the nation’s average for all occupations — and the current workforce rapidly approaching retirement, the insurance industry is at something of a crossroads.
With Millennials rapidly becoming the largest generation in the U.S. labor force, with Gen Z hot on their heels, insurance companies need to change tactics in order to appeal to younger generations and survive the growing talent crisis.
Update your recruitment strategy
The days in which a business could place a “help wanted” ad in their local newspaper and anticipate responses from qualified candidates are long gone. The ongoing industry-wide talent shortage has forced insurance companies to be savvier about how they attract new employees and has driven recruitment efforts online.
From LinkedIn to Indeed, there are numerous websites that insurers can use to post detailed job listings; many of these sites give insurers the option to share listings across Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms so that they reach a wider audience and are seen by the right people.
Job posting sites also make it easier for candidates to apply for open positions by directly uploading their resumes.
For a more hands-on approach to recruitment, insurance companies are advised to partner with local colleges and universities to educate students about the insurance industry and the career paths within it and to offer internship programs.
Insurers might even consider working with schools to develop specialty courses in business analytics to prepare students for a career in insurance. Whichever approach to recruitment insurers decide to take, it’s important that they communicate to potential recruits the value of their company and that their teams have the systems, support, and infrastructure to help them thrive in their new role.
Develop a seamless onboarding process
The faster insurance companies can onboard new recruits and start assigning them cases, the better.
Insurers should re-evaluate their onboarding process on a regular basis to identify inefficiencies and work toward resolving them; this prevents new recruits from running into the same obstacles the current team faced when they were onboarded.
This is important from a retention perspective because an inefficient onboarding process is a symptom of a much larger structural issue, and new employees are less likely to stay with an insurance company that is unprepared or that doesn’t immediately set them up for success.
Invest in advanced technology
As children of the digital era, Millennials are fluent in technology and are less receptive to legacy software and systems than previous generations.
In order to attract and retain new talent, insurers need to invest in technology that will enable employees to optimize existing processes and procedures, better understand customers, and do their jobs more efficiently.
For example, there are customer relationship management solutions designed specifically for the insurance industry that make it possible to digitize customer data and store it within a central repository; different departments across the company can easily access the information stored within this database and use it to build detailed customer profiles, quickly process claims, identify upselling opportunities, and more.
Reimagine your company culture and workplace environment
Corporate culture is a major selling point for any company and is especially important to Millennials: Compared to earlier generations, Millennials prefer to work collaboratively, want to work for leaders who inspire them, value a healthy work-life balance, and flourish under mentorship.
As far as workplace environment is concerned, Millennials are most productive when offered flexible work hours, the option to work remotely, the chance to be involved in company decisions, and time off rather than compensation for overtime work.
Although it might not be possible for insurance companies to offer all of these benefits to new employees, implementing a few can help insurers create conditions under which the next generation of the workforce can thrive, and where they’ll be more likely to remain for years to come.
About the author: Leah Bowling is the VP of Insurance and Healthcare at Hitachi Solutions and provides sales and industry leadership as a Microsoft Cloud, Dynamics 365 and CRM subject matter expert. Additionally, Leah helps to curate and manage Hitachi Solutions’ Intellectual Property. She and her team also work closely with Microsoft to produce industry-specific solutions and stay current on product knowledge and expertise.