November 4, 2020

Three 2021 Talent Acquisition Strategies for Insurance Organizations

by Chris Winterboer

While many of the basic tenets of insurance have remained steady for the past several years, the face of the industry has definitely changed. The pending talent gap has been talked about for years now, with upwards of 25% of the industry hitting retirement age in 2020. So, now that we’re past that original D-Day alarm bell, the age-old question is worth asking again, “What should be our company’s strategy to recruit experienced insurance talent?”


Here are three answers to the talent acquisition questions for insurance organizations in 2021.

Utilize Technology Like Never Before

The companies that have a robust technology platform for their messaging will have a HUGE advantage over those that don’t. This may seem like a no-brainer, but it goes much deeper than you may realize at first blush. I am not just talking about posting sites and website SEO. You absolutely need those resources, but first thing to consider is how candidates view your messages, aka if they’re smartphone and device compatible.

  • Are your job advertisements formatted correctly to be viewed on a small screen? Most applicants have the patience to spend 4-6 seconds and one scroll on a job posting or email solicitation.
  • Is your messaging concise and easy to read?
  • Is there video content to really grab their attention and keep it for more than a few vital seconds?

Humanize the Process

With fewer college graduates and young professionals thinking about insurance as a first career option, you will really need to be relatable to the dwindling number of qualified candidates out there. Don’t overcomplicate the process with formalities, but rather embrace the different world we live in now. It will show empathy, understanding and a recognition that new protocols may be in place for a long time to come. Not all employers are doing that now, so again you will have a leg up on your competition in this regard.

  1. Consider virtual happy hours with candidates on a Friday afternoon to really get to know the team.
  2. Acknowledge what has worked and what hasn’t worked with a remote workforce over the past several months.
  3. Encourage casual attire for video interviews as many hiring managers are working from home right now too.

Anticipate A Talent Gap

Along with retirements, young people are voluntarily leaving the insurance industry. Many candidates recently have asked me what options may be outside of insurance. I am not much help since we focus exclusively in the insurance space, but I encourage each and every one of them to stay put for a while. I believe the future is bright for the insurance industry, with all kinds of opportunity for people with a good attitude about their future in it. So where do the best candidates come from? You have to be willing to look at non-traditional avenues.

  1. Convince an Account Manager or CSR to consider sales. I have clients that have helped make this transition seamless.
  2. Bring people in from a related industry (banking, financial services, etc.). Anyone with a good Rolodex and professional network can learn the ins and outs of insurance with some mentoring.
  3. Get back to sales management protocols. This has been a donut hole in many insurance companies and agencies. Many younger producers especially need someone to mentor, train, and develop them professionally to really be successful.

By employing some of these ideas and more, you will find yourself having more invigorating conversations, expand your talent pool, and maybe even find a surprise candidate or two that wasn’t even looking for a job before you came along!


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