Talent gap in the insurance industry has sparked a battle for success

Published: October 31, 2019

Updated: November 4, 2019

Author: Luke Jones

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As has been well documented, the property and casualty industry in Canada is facing an upcoming talent problem. Many industry veterans are closing on retirement, leaving a gap in the talent pool. That means a race is on to recruit new talent and reports suggest the war for employees is getting ugly.

Across the industry, from brokers, to separate divisions within insurers, it is clear there are not enough people to go around. The result is understaffed teams doing too much work. With this lack of available talent, mistakes are happening, and customers are left picking up the pieces.

At the recent 2019 Insurance Brokers Association of Ontario (IBAO) Convention, one session saw brokers ask an insurance company if it would hire more underwriting talent. According to some brokers, policy renewals were processed three months after they were sent.

Specifically, one broker at the meeting told a story about a colleague who sent three clients to a carrier for property insurance in July but did not receive a renewal notice until Oct. 11. One of the renewals has still not been sent back.

“We told the client, ‘Premiums are still what we told you, but now your monthly budget [has changed],” the broker said. “Trying to explain to client that their [monthly insurance] payment went from $110 to $205; they don’t understand that. So that’s a little frustrating.”

Why did the renewal process take so long? Because the carrier in question was seeking more staff.