Four Ways to Tout Insurance Careers and Recruit Talent
Connecting with elementary, high school and higher ed students can help companies find potential employees or at least inspire some to pursue a path in the industry.
- Carly Burnham
- June 2021
Insurance companies and agencies are still facing issues acquiring new talent. We struggle to bring in the next generation. There are myriad reasons for this, and we can analyze them another time. Today, I want to share four opportunities that all insurance professionals have to help attract young people to our industry.
Look for opportunities to work with and mentor students in elementary and high school. Junior Achievement, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, and Boys &Girls Clubs of America are just a few organizations known for making an important difference in the lives of youth. While you are in these settings, you can make your own impact by first, showing up, and also by talking about the work you do and how you came to do it. Connecting with children one on one allows you to spread the good news about insurance careers while helping them understand that our industry is so much more interesting, fun and relevant than what they might see on TV or in ads.
Do you remember the first time you met a grown-up whose job sounded like something you could do? You could be that adult for someone and change the trajectory of their life.
Go Back to College
There are many insurance organizations geared toward students of higher education. Gamma Iota Sigma, The Spencer Foundation, and the Insurance Careers Movement all help college and university students find entry-level career paths in insurance. These organizations are always looking for people to help plan events, market these events and serve as a liaison between local companies and schools.
Making connections and establishing a solid relationship between your company and a local college can help you be a visible employer. It gives you access to future employees you may otherwise have overlooked, and you wind up marketing your own business in the process. You may even find a “Reverse Mentor” who can help you understand the next generation!
Share Your Story Broadly
Personal connections help young people see where they might fit in to insurance. Unfortunately, when most people think of our industry, they think of sales and claims. There is limited understanding of all of the roles within an insurance company. So shout it from the rooftop, or at least quietly talk with friends and neighbors about the actual work you do. Let them in on the secret that insurance is a pretty cool way to earn a living. A great place to share your story is through Insurance Nerds (shameless plug) and our series “Why I Love Insurance.” We believe sharing our stories will help others connect to our work and maybe even get inspired to give the industry a try.
Hire Interns and Part-Timers
Many of us stumbled into this industry by accident. I ended up here after taking a part-time office assistant role while I was in college. Others might accept an insurance-related internship until they can find something “better.” Whether it's that type of role or something more substantial, it's a great way to get students in the door so their curiosity can be sparked as they learn something real about the work we do.
Insurance continues to have a reputation as an old, conservative industry. Those of us on the inside know the changing landscape is incredibly interesting. But to keep up with the times, we must recruit people who are ready to learn and who bring the perspective of upcoming generations. Connecting with younger individuals early on is a great way to find that talent and help them see the value of pursuing a career in insurance.
Best’s Review contributor Carly Burnham, CPCU, MBA, has been in the insurance industry since 2004. She blogs at InsNerds.com and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.