February 3, 2017
A group of young insurance professionals has committed to changing the conversation about insurance as a way to bring more people into industry jobs.
Calling themselves the “Insurance Talent Movement,” about 20 professionals from nine companies throughout Ohio are working together to “change perceptions, raise awareness and fill the pipeline.”
The group was formed from the membership of the Ohio Insurance Institute in late 2016 to support the organization’s workforce development goals and to collaborate with the Insurance Industry Resource Council (IIRC).
According to a 2016 workforce study, Ohio’s insurance industry will require about 29,000 workers to fill new positions and positions vacated by retiring baby boomers between now and 2024. The IIRC during the past five years has targeted groups such as military veterans, mid-career professionals and college students as potential new blood for the industry.
The Insurance Talent Movement is still developing strategies and growing its membership, but its objectives are clear: to conduct informational outreach about the industry to students, career changers and military veterans as well as to develop professionally as members of the group.
Andrew Pfingstler, a risk management assistant at the Motorists Insurance Group and a July 2016 graduate of Slippery Rock University, says it’s important for young people to know that there are opportunities in insurance beyond sales and claims. Pfingstler is a walking example.
“I graduated with a safety management degree,” Pfingstler says. “I thought I would be going into a safety-related field upon graduation, either for heavy industry or in construction.”
A fortuitous internship changed the pathway he was on. “I needed to have an internship counting for 12 hours toward my degree,” Pfingstler says. “A friend had interned at Motorists, and so I applied, too. It ended up working out.” After graduation Pfingstler needed a job. He says, “I had a good experience in my internship, so I applied. I previously had no idea that insurance was a career path for me. In school, they never taught me how safety would relate to insurance. But risk management is related to safety.”
As a member of the Insurance Talent Movement, Pfingstler is excited to take that message to others as he continues to grow in his own professional competencies and relationships.
“Kids who are in broad majors like mine can go a lot of places,” he says. “It’s good to show that insurance provides opportunities that you never would have thought of.”
The IIRC is funded by:
Celina Insurance Group
Central Mutual Insurance Company
The Cincinnati Insurance Company
Liberty Mutual Insurance
Molina Healthcare of Ohio
Motorists Insurance Group
Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company
Ohio Insurance Agents Association, Inc.
Ohio Mutual Insurance Group
State Auto Insurance Company of Ohio
Wayne Insurance Group
Westfield Insurance Company