I recently received the September issue of OTR (On The Risk), a Journal of The Academy of Life Underwriting. This issue included a great article on the results for the 2014 ALU Life Underwriter Census.
Donna Daniells, OTR Executive Editor, provided an executive summary which highlighted a concerning finding:
"23% of life underwriters expect to continue working in a life underwriting role for 5 years or less."
What's the takeaway here? We ought to start building the next generation of life underwriters!
Read further to see what three things we've been doing to alter this potential shortage.
At LOGiQ3, we're huge supporters of training, career development, and hiring the next generation of professionals. I'd like to share a few things we do to encourage newcomers to the Underwriting profession, as we've successfully built a team of young and bright underwriters ourselves.
1. Actively Seek Newcomers
As a consulting and outsourcing service provider, we often run into challenges with resourcing - i.e., scaling accordingly with supply and demand of resourcing. Keeping our talent pipeline full is a priority within our organization, as this allows us to be as flexible as we can be for our clients' needs.
Thanks to our well connected team, we receive many referrals as potential candidates, but what about the new and yet to be discovered talent who may have great potential in becoming a part of that next generation of life underwriters?
Here is a glimpse into what we do:
- Participate in College/University Job Fairs and Alumni Groups - to introduce the overall insurance and reinsurance industry as well as talk about our organization and our unique company culture. We often bring our SMEs to these job fairs so that students can learn the life of an Underwriter directly from the Underwriter! Through Alumni groups, we have also volunteered to host mentor/mentee events at our office to bring recent graduates directly into our work environment.
- LinkedIn Recruiter & Company Page - many students who haven't yet graduated are starting their job search early. They are creating their Professional Profiles way ahead of their Careers. They are eager to start communicating with potential employees and I would say that most of our new talent is driven from our LinkedIn network. Year to date, we've received over 400 resumes via LinkedIn!
- Social Media Conversations - the A+ talent in the market are looking for potential employers that are ahead of the curve. They are interested in companies that can offer them something in return. This includes flexibility, variety of challenging opportunities, a unique culture and a competitive salary. Through our Facebook and Twitter accounts, we encourage conversations with potential employees so that they have a sense of what LOGiQ3 is all about.
- Job Postings on Website - even when we don't have an open position that doesn't mean we aren't actively looking for talent, because we are, always! Our Careers Page is highly visible and accessible on our website. We encourage potential candidates to submit their resumes to us all year round.
2. Training & Development
Similar to the 75% of the ALU census participants, we also offer internal training to our underwriters. From our experience, we find that our recent grads highly value training and continuing education opportunities. They are also looking for a variety of networking opportunities to sharpen their softer skills.
Our formal internal underwriting training and development program includes:
- Putting our new hires through the LOGiQ3 Underwriting Training Program
- Bi-weekly mentoring sessions with their dedicated Underwriting Mentor
- On the job training
- Internal Underwriting Audit and Co-signing of cases
- Bi-weekly practical case clinics
- Attending industry events and seminars
- Administering and participating in our LinkedIn Underwriting Training Alumni Group
- Industry designation requirements, i.e. ALU, LOMA
- Individual career development plan
3. Staying Current
As an employer, in this innovation-driven and technology-hungry economy, it has become that much more important to stay current and relevant in not only our own industry, but in general.
If our own employees are primarily using mobile-friendly tools, conversing through social media, and prepared to working in paperless environments, it is crucial to adapt to the changes and needs of the employees and stay ahead of the curve.
There is huge rise in mobile technology and at LOGiQ3, we are trying our best to make a variety of our internal tools accessible anywhere and anytime via mobile apps. These include:
- Time Tracking
- Sales Tracking
- Marketing Activity Monitoring
- Training & Development (via our Learning Management System that is fully online and accessible via Mobile)
- Expense Management
- Travel Management
- Event Management
|Natalie Ho is Vice President, Marketing & Sales at LOGiQ3
Connect with Natalie
On a somewhat related note re: staying current, I'm also extremely proud and excited about the launch of our new E-Commerce site. This speaks to staying current with the demanding real-time sales needs of the market. We are now offering all our E-Learning modules for sale, online, in the comfort of your own home - reducing barriers and getting you what you want in real-time. (Read full press release on launch)
I hope you've gained some insight in terms of what you can do to help inject some new, bright talent into the world of Life Underwriting.
We are excited in our continued path to grow and build our team, it is extremely rewarding to see new talent emerge and become that next generation of professionals!
To my Canadian friends, Happy Thanksgiving, and the rest of you, have a fabulous Fall weekend! - Natalie