Finding and keeping employees is a continuing challenge for the insurance industry. An analysis of federal statistics by Ward Benchmarking and the Jacobson Group found employment in insurance in 2022 is up 1.83% over 2021.
While employment is up, the number of job openings is up as well. Jacobson Group CEO Greg Jacobson said at year’s end in 2022, there were 386,000 insurance jobs open.
“Carriers have had a difficult time keeping up with the turnover, primarily as it relates to retirements,” he said. “And then we also (are) seeing more and more employees going to alternative employers.”
Jacobson says all this in spite of the industry spending more money on wages. On average insurers and agencies issued pay hikes of 4% in 2022. In some sectors of the business — the Bureau of Labor Statistics says — wage increases hit 6%.
The 2% difference — Jacobson noted — is accounted for because of people starting jobs at new companies at higher wages.
There’s another issue hurting insurance. Turnover in 2022 was 14.7%. While that’s huge, Jacobson said turnover slowed considerably in the second half of the year when the economy started to get a bit shaky.
By the way, most of the turnover is voluntary and not from layoffs, or firing.
Jeff Rieder of Ward Benchmarking talked a bit about the volatile economy and hiring. He said hiring these days depends on how well a specific company is doing at the time.
“Commercial lines organizations and specialty organizations in particular are expected to see continued growth whereas many of the personal lines companies are getting hit harder with not only the increase in inflation and supply chain issues, but with many states not allowing adequate rate increases to offset that,” Rieder said.
Rieder also pointed out that the pandemic is still hitting life and health companies hard.
As for hiring, the Ward Benchmarking and Jacobson Group study found it’s getting easier to hire good talent. That said, it’s still a challenge to close the deal because a lot of potential workers are holding out for more working from home and better benefits.
One of the things asked most by people considering accepting a job is whether they can work most of the time from home, or is a home-office hybrid in effect. For insurance, Rieder said, it’s a push-pull scenario.
“I think that’s where companies are struggling. How can you build that culture if employees are not actually there to be a part of it,” he said.
The study found:
- Just 4% of insurance companies expect workers to be in the office full time
- 4% of companies say they’re completely virtual
- 72% say they require workers to be in the office at least once a week
Source link: WGLT.org — http://bit.ly/3XPxVMO