Recruiting and Retaining in a Candidate’s Market

Recruiting and Retaining in a Candidate’s Market

Avatar photo Amy Simpson | May 15, 2023

The insurance industry is experiencing a redistribution of talent, an aging workforce and consistent disruption. Its vital insurance organizations are exploring their current talent strategies to successfully attract and retain those at the hearts of their organizations: claims professionals. Especially during catastrophe season, an engaged and agile claims team is key for effectively serving policyholders in their times of need.  

However, the industry is continuing to experience an extreme talent shortage. To come out ahead, claims leaders must take a fresh approach to their current strategies. Let’s take a look into how we should be recruiting and retaining in a candidate’s market. 

Broaden Your Candidate Base 

Competition for talent is not slowing down. In fact, a recent study uncovered the demand for claims professionals within property and casualty insurers is at its highest in the study’s 13-year history. Successfully attracting new talent to your organization and these vital operational roles is essential. 

Appeal to a broader audience by focusing on the human element of claims in your job descriptions, not just the technical specifications. In the current candidate-driven labor market, recruiting success is often dependent on looking for talent in non-traditional places and focusing on transferable skills rather than specific experience. Access a wider pool of potential talent by tapping into industries outside of insurance that depends on similar core skill sets.  

For instance, individuals in retail, food service or even banking roles generally have honed their skills in areas such as customer service and problem-solving, which directly contribute to success in claims. Determine which skills are necessary for a role and which more technical or process-focused components can be taught on the job, letting this guide your recruitment and selection process. 

Note that younger generations generally desire the ability to make a difference, while staying true to their personal values. They also value opportunity for movement, both upward and laterally. As you strive to recruit young professionals, focus on how you can fulfill their unique needs and provide flexible schedules and remote work opportunities, among other benefits.  

Share how a role in claims enables them to make an impact, while laying the foundation for a wealth of future opportunities — whether it’s moving more linearly into senior claims management or growing into other areas of the organization. Often, these individuals have had limited exposure to insurance, making it important to help them identify and understand potential opportunities. 

Energize Current Employees 

While claims provide an outstanding starting gate for a lifelong career in insurance, entry-level claims roles can be challenging. Many young claims professionals spend their days talking with customers who are reacting to high-stress situations or experiencing loss, and because of this, it is important for you to be empathetic and actively support your current employees. Providing tools such as soft skills and emotional intelligence training can help them effectively diffuse charged situations and feel more confident and comfortable in their roles. 

Be intentional in helping employees feel a sense of belonging and camaraderie within your team and organization. Connect individuals with their peers, as well as professionals in other departments and levels of the organization. Demonstrate your commitment to their growth and development by pairing high-potential individuals with coaches and mentors. These relationships can help broaden an individual’s understanding of your organization and how to position themselves for success in both their current and future roles. 

Redefine Retention 

Prioritizing retention not only ensures you’re able to meet demands during CAT season, but it also creates a bench of well-rounded talent primed to build long-term careers with your company. In addition to recruiting from outside the organization, consider how you can build mid-career claims talent internally. Invest in retaining and developing young talent into more experienced professionals, ready to step into roles left vacant from retirement and attrition. 

Create formal retention plans for high potential individuals that account for their current needs and future goals. Consider holding “stay interviews” to better understand what they are looking for in a long-term career and whether they are satisfied with their role and the larger organization. These transparent conversations enable you to uncover individuals’ motivators and what it will take to keep them with your company.  

For some, this may be in the form of money and bonuses, yet others may be more motivated by flexibility, upward mobility or public recognition. Asking candid questions will enable you to create more tailored retention plans that resonate with individual employees. 

An organization’s success is dependent on its talent. By refreshing how your claims department approaches talent acquisition and management, you’ll be better positioned to remain competitive in today’s market.  


The James Allen Companies can help you broaden your talent pool, recognize the needs of today’s young professionals, and invest in your current internal talent. Our team of experienced professionals has the industry knowledge and expertise to match you with a role that will leverage your skills and provide an environment where you can thrive. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you take your career to the next level. 

About the Author

Avatar photo
Amy Simpson
Amy has more than a decade of experience successfully recruiting experienced insurance professionals. Her extensive expertise and network of contacts has allowed her to place highly skilled and nearly impossible to find candidates in underwriting, claims, loss control, sales, premium audit, marketing, human resources, IT and beyond. She loves the challenge of looking for someone who seems impossible to find. Amy is committed to exceeding her clients’ expectations and enjoys helping people to enhance their careers. Amy has two young children, Noah and Jonah, with her husband Marc. They love to travel and look forward to planning their next visit to Disney World.
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