Trends Influencing the Landscape of the Insurance Labor Market

Panel Summary authored by Karen Borg. Butler Rubin Saltarelli & Boyd 

Here are some key takeaways from the presentation on “Trends Influencing the Landscape of the Insurance Labor Market” by Margaret Resce Milkint and Bill Barbagallo:

• Due to the aging of the workforce and changing landscape of the insurance industry, the industry needs to focus on succession planning and attracting new talent.

• There will be 400,000 positions to be staffed by 2020. There is a growing focus on big data and analytics. Big data and analytics jobs are forecast to increase 92% by 2017.

• The millennials will soon be the largest aspect of the workforce. The millennials were shaped by 9/11, are often misunderstood, and are more casual than previous generations. Millennials multitask and they are interested in flexibility and time off to volunteer. Generation Z (born after 1995) individuals were shaped by the recession and are more fiscally conservative, service-minded, and looking to “do good.”

• Current challenges facing the insurance industry due to the aging workforce include: document management in order to capture information; adapting to the younger generation’s increased use and knowledge of technology; transfer of technical knowledge retained by older workers; and the cost of “knowledge transfer.”

• Today’s professionals have a different mindset than the Boomers, who maintained a “worker bee” culture. This generation approaches work differently in that work is not the “end all,” and today’s young workers seek the resources to get the job done faster so that they can spend time away from the office. As a result, the insurance industry needs to invest in the infrastructure to implement systems to provide these resources.

• As Generation Z is ready to join the working world, we are losing verbal communication. Generation Z prefers to text and email rather than to have in-person conversations, craves immediate and constant feedback, and is looking for “harmony.”

• As the war for fresh talent grows, employers need to focus on rewards, recognition, retention bonuses, the opportunity for rewarding work, flexibility, and the implementation of official programs to manage the change.