Ten volunteers, a few glue sticks, construction paper and a surprise visit from the one-and-only Cookie Monster are all it took to foster employee engagement and help promote the unique company culture at The Jacobson Group. On October 16th, a group of Jacobson employees visited Chicago’s Harold Washington Library as part of the Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation’s (IICF) Week of Giving event. Participating in the newly launched Every Day is a Reading and Writing Day initiative, our volunteers joined together with local children and families to participate in interactive Sesame Street games, videos and activities designed to encourage children and the adults in their lives to read and write together.
The leadership landscape of the insurance industry is poised to undergo monumental changes during the next 10 years. Currently, the fraction of professionals aged 55 and older within the insurance industry is nearly 30 percent higher than that same fraction measured within the economy as a whole. In addition, almost 25 percent of the current workforce is predicted to be on the verge of retirement by 2018. At this rate, experts estimate the industry will need to fill 400,000 positions by 2020 in order to remain fully staffed.
The most important part of any organization is its employees. The effective engagement of employees can be the difference between business success and failure. However, as mentioned in a previous blog post, Gallup reports that 63% of U.S. employees are unhappy with their jobs, while 24% actively hate their position. Together, these number reflect a bleak reality where just over 1 in 10 U.S. employees actually enjoy their work.
The crunch is on! As analytics and big data shape the future of the insurance industry and the demand for high-quality talent continues to grow, insurance organizations are faced with the difficult task of finding experienced data and analytics professionals amid a challenging recruiting climate. Already, the U.S. is expected to see a shortfall of more than 260,000 analytics professionals as early as next year.
The results are in!
The results from our third quarter iteration of the U.S. Insurance Labor Outlook Study are now available. Compared to the January 2014 survey, the rate of expected hiring experienced a slight decrease, down to 58%; however, this remains the second highest reading since we started the semi-annual survey back in 2009. In addition, unemployment continues to be low, with the BLS reporting the August 2014 rate for insurance at 2.4%. The industry is clearly enjoying an extended period of relative stability.
As more and more insurers find the value in leveraging data analytics throughout their organizations, the demand for high-quality, experienced data and analytics professionals is on the rise. Alas, the insurance industry is not the only one looking to expand its analytics presence. With a shallow pool of qualified analytics talent, insurance organizations are facing an increasingly challenging recruiting climate as they attempt to address their analytics and big data needs.
As mentioned in our recent analytics blog post, the demand for actuarial talent in 2014 was surpassed by analytics for the first time in the history of The Jacobson Group and Ward Group’s Semi-Annual U.S. Insurance Labor Outlook Study. In addition, analytics ranks in the top five most in-demand job functions, as well as in the top five areas where companies are planning to increase staff throughout the year.
From analytics to big data, red-hot technology buzzwords are sweeping across the insurance industry and companies are beginning to realize the significant value of these trends. Progressive insurance organizations are embracing these groundbreaking applications of technology and changing the way the industry does business.
For many insurance organizations, the use of analytics has become a tool allowing them to differentiate themselves, stay ahead of the curve, build their brands, enhance profitability and gain a leg-up in today’s competitive market.
It’s almost that time again. Open healthcare enrollment for 2015 is quickly approaching. With the recently announced postponement, enrollment is now slated to run from November 15, 2014, through January 15, 2015. Despite the one-month delay, most insurers already fear that the 2015 enrollment period will prove to be rockier than the inaugural Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) enrollment period.
It is my pleasure to introduce a guest blogger for this latest post. Dave Coons is a senior vice president here at Jacobson, providing leadership to our professional recruiting, emerging talent, RPO and temporary and temp-to-hire staffing practices. His insights into interview strategies are worth a read. Enjoy…
The insurance industry is way behind the times. There are no opportunities for me to advance my career. It’s a stale industry that fails to embrace change.
We’ve heard it all before.