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[UPDATE] Insurance carriers look to boost headcount, alter recruiting strategies

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According to the Insurance Labor Market Study by The Jacobson Group and Ward Group, the P&C industry has lost 14,000 jobs so far in 2021. The study also found that more than half of commercial lines carriers are looking to add staff, while 40% of personal lines carriers plan to increase headcount within the next 12 months. 

Because of the sustained interest in working remotely, recruiters are having to contact twice as many potential candidates when recruiting higher-level employees because people just aren't as interested in relocating. In response, insurance companies have changed their recruitment strategies and employee offerings to include incentives like flexible work schedules, remote work arrangements and mental health resources to stand out and recruit more talent.

Here are some updates on carriers and their hiring plans from the past two months:

  • GEICO announced plans to hire nearly 300 new associates in claims, services, sales and other areas in Renton and Tucson. The leading carrier also increased starting salaries across the department, and is in search of Spanish speakers as well. 
  • USAA is raising the minimum wage for its employees to $21 an hour from $16, as it looks to hire 2,600 claims adjusters, service representatives, IT analysts and software engineers across several office locations. The carrier is also beefing up its benefits package, adding childcare reimbursement for some workers, college scholarship program for dependents, and other family support offerings. 
  • Elephant Insurance is building out its presence among independent agents and is looking to expand its reach. The carrier has already partnered with companies like Goosehead and Agentero.

Here are some updates on carriers and their hiring plans from August:


Within the P&C industry, the list of insurers looking to boost their headcounts has grown steadily in 2021, with carriers pitted against each other — as well as tech giants and financial services firms — in the search for skilled and experienced workers. Here are some ways some leaders in the industry have been changing up the way they’re approaching the hiring process. 

Increasing headcount

Despite technological advances, a recent LexisNexis survey showed 51% of consumers still prefer to interact with a live person when submitting an insurance claim, proving that when it comes to insurance, people still want to talk to other people.

Offering career advancement opportunities

Work-life priorities have changed over the past few years; employees aren’t just looking for cool office amenities and fun work perks anymore. Instead, people are looking for meaningful offerings like mental health resources, support for continuing education and hybrid office hours. Many carriers have started to place a higher value on career advancement, job stability and the positive social value of insurance to reflect those nice-to-haves. 

Taking advantage of remote work 

With many companies transitioning employees to work remotely in the past year, some insurers are recruiting employees that aren’t physically near existing offices because they simply don't have to anymore. 

Consolidation

Instead of building regional customer bases from scratch, larger carriers have acquired smaller agencies to expand their reach in the past few years. Some insurers have partnered with insurtechs and start-ups, allowing companies to offer a diverse range of job opportunities and better bundles to customers. 

Operating in a hybrid environment poses as the new normal, even in the world of insurance. As industry leaders modify the way they approach business models, the workforce, and operational trends to be more digital-centric and less “traditional”, it will be interesting to see how P&C insurers blend old ways of operating with new technologies. 

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The ZebraThe nation's leading independent insurance comparison site

The Zebra is an independent insurance advisor and quote comparison site with headquarters in Austin, Texas. Utilizing its real-time quote comparison tool, The Zebra partners with companies such as Allstate, Liberty Mutual, and Progressive to help consumers browse pricing, coverage, and service level for both home and auto insurance policies.