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Trends That Will Affect Insurance Job Staffing in 2013

Posted by on Jan 28, 2013 in News | Comments Off on Trends That Will Affect Insurance Job Staffing in 2013

There are some unique environmental trends at play that will affect insurance job staffing in 2013.  This year will be shaped by a challenging insurance employment market. The market is shifting away from a buyer’s market. As a result there are two key issues that need to be explored as hiring managers and companies think about their insurance staffing needs for 2013.

A reality check of hiring expectations

Despite continued high unemployment, many companies in 2012 struggled to find qualified insurance professional applicants for their openings. While this is a result in some part of real shifts in required job skills, it is also a reflection of the more detailed and demanding selection criteria that has developed in the current “buyer’s” employment market. Businesses will need to confront this environment as the new normal and respond accordingly.

During the recession it was possible to demand exactly the experience and background you were seeking as an employer, and to be able to find a qualified candidate with reasonable salary expectations. Currently, most companies will need to relax their stringent selection criteria and focus on bright people with great attitudes that can learn the skills that they do not already possess.

Growing awareness of the importance of the candidate experience

As businesses contend with the continued lack of qualified insurance candidates (perceived or real), it will trigger more intense competition for select insurance professionals. As a result, companies will focus more on wooing talent, in part by delivering a distinctive and appealing candidate experience during the recruiting process.

A great candidate experience requires timely communication, feedback, and a display of courtesy with regard to scheduling and interview techniques. This is very important for employers to realize, especially in a tight market. Even if the employer does not ultimately extend an insurance job offer to the candidate – a particularly bad candidate experience will be shared with other potential candidates that are known to that individual. It is a small industry – it is important to take some small measures to maintain a positive employment reputation.

President of Allison Personnel Service, Tricia Millstead is licensed in property & casualty, life & health, and surplus lines. In addition to attaining her CIC and ARM designations, she also holds a BBA with concentrations in marketing and finance and graduate studies in organizational psychology.

2012 Year-End Recap of Michigan Insurance Employment & Salary Trends

Posted by on Dec 23, 2012 in News | Comments Off on 2012 Year-End Recap of Michigan Insurance Employment & Salary Trends

2012 has been a very active year for Michigan insurance jobs. The market is shifting from an employer’s market to an employee’s market in many segments. Salaries have been stagnant and workloads have been high in many insurance organizations. We have seen quite a bit of movement with insurance professionals looking for better employment options now that the economy is showing signs of recovery. We have seen more job offers declined if the salary differential was small. Other areas of concern with potential job changers were vacation time and benefit waiting periods.

Below is a recap of 2012 regarding what we have seen relative to salaries and other trends.

Personal Lines

Salaries are ranging from $30-47k for Michigan insurance positions. This still continues to be an area of high demand as the market hardens and insurance companies are requiring more underwriting information from the agencies. Additionally many policyholders are shopping their insurance renewals, creating more service work with remarketing in order to retain business. It remains challenging to find qualified personal lines CSRs with independent agency experience. Unfortunately we are an aging industry and continue to struggle with attracting and training new people.

Commercial Lines Account Managers/Marketing Managers

Salaries range from $50k+ depending on types of accounts and revenue handled. Some positions provide a bonus based upon retention. Salary levels are rising as truly qualified candidates are not willing to move laterally as they might have done in the past few years. We anticipate that the demand for experienced commercial account managers will continue in 2013. There will be a need for experienced insurance professionals that can negotiate with insurance carriers on terms as the market continues to harden.

Commercial Lines CSR or Client Support

Salaries range from $40-55k. There is still a high demand for qualified insurance candidates for these positions, which may range from a CSR that handles a small business desk to a CSR that supports an account management team on larger commercial insurance accounts.

Employee Benefits Account Managers

Salaries range from $45-70k+ depending on the book of business handled and the size of employer groups. We are finding many brokers and agencies targeting larger employer groups with the uncertainty of healthcare reform and insurance exchanges. Experience with self funding options is in high demand.

Benefits Analysts

Salaries range from 40-60k+ depending on experience levels. These candidates are in high demand, particularly if they have superior Excel skills and experience with self funding.

Part Time Service Positions

Hourly rates ranging from $17.00-$22.00 per hour for licensed insurance professionals in both personal lines and commercial lines. We saw a significant increase in part time insurance employment this year.

Commercial Producers and Sales Agents

There is consistent demand for producers, however, there was a reluctance to provide base salaries and draws throughout the recession. We did see hiring with base salaries this year, although the pace was slower and the hiring process longer. We anticipate higher demand in 2013, as most agencies had a good financial year in 2012 and are once again able to invest in organic growth.

Insurance Agency Claims Professionals

Salaries ranging from $50-60k. We saw more hiring in this area in 2012. Most positions were created by attrition. We still are not seeing additions to staff in this area, however, we anticipate greater demand in 2013 as the market continues to harden.

If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please feel free to contact me at your convenience!

President of Allison Personnel Service, Tricia Millstead is licensed in property & casualty, life & health, and surplus lines. In addition to attaining her CIC and ARM designations, she also holds a BBA with concentrations in marketing and finance and graduate studies in organizational psychology.

Insurance Recruiting Market Update – Demonstrate Employee Appreciation!

Posted by on Nov 21, 2012 in News | 0 comments

We are presently witnessing a change in the local insurance employment marketplace.  The market is shifting from an employer’s market to an employee’s market in many segments.  Salaries have been stagnant and workloads have been high in many insurance organizations.  Increased revenue and opportunity is prompting many independent agencies to add to staff, and experienced insurance professionals seeking Michigan insurance jobs are in high demand.

Now is the time for managers and principals to make sure they are focusing on human resource issues.  We hear a recurring theme from candidates of heavy workloads and not feeling valued by their current employer.  The recession is over, at least in the local insurance job market.  Salaries are creeping upward and there are more opportunities to consider than there have been in years.   A concerted effort to demonstrate appreciation of valued employees and balance work/life issues will go a long way toward reducing turnover at this time.

Contact me for all of your insurance staffing needs!

President of Allison Personnel Service, Tricia Millstead is licensed in property & casualty, life & health, and surplus lines. In addition to attaining her CIC and ARM designations, she also holds a BBA with concentrations in marketing and finance and graduate studies in organizational psychology.

 

 

Market Update from Michigan’s Insurance Staffing Company

Posted by on Oct 30, 2012 in News | 0 comments

Increasing rates driven by insurance carriers’ high combined ratios and severe weather are also pushing demand for experienced insurance professionals. As the market continues to harden we are seeing growth in local insurance jobs. The demand for qualified independent agency staff is strong, and there are not enough candidates to meet the current demand.

The recession forced career changes. The reduction or elimination of training programs and college recruiting, out of state re-locations, and many other situations that have contributed to the labor crunch we are feeling locally. As an insurance employment agency, we are finding that it is particularly difficult to find personal lines salespeople and account managers. The demand is stronger now than it has been in some years. We are beginning to see demand in the commercial lines area as well. Michigan insurance jobs are there and we are working diligently to fill them!

President of Allison Personnel Service, Tricia Millstead is licensed in property & casualty, life & health, and surplus lines. In addition to attaining her CIC and ARM designations, she also holds a BBA with concentrations in marketing and finance and graduate studies in organizational psychology.

Michigan Insurance Jobs Market Update

Posted by on Sep 28, 2012 in News | 0 comments

Below you will find a Michigan insurance jobs market update from Insurance Staffing Agency, Allison Personnel Service.

Employee Benefits Analysts

We continue to see very high demand for experienced analysts, particularly those that are familiar with self-funding arrangements.  The salary levels continue to rise for these positions as group health insurance agencies and brokers are approaching their busiest season of the year.

Commercial Lines Insurance Account Managers 

We are starting to see demand outpace supply here as well for commercial insurance jobs.  With the commercial property & casualty market continuing to harden in certain lines of insurance, more time and expertise is required to maintain and write new business.  Salary levels are creeping upward,  and we continue to see counter offers on high value candidates.  The scarcity of qualified candidates falls mainly within the independent agency job market, particularly on the lighter side (3-5 years of experience, mainly BOP and small business experience).

Risk Management Jobs and Claims Positions

As commercial property insurance rates harden, particularly for habitational risks, we are seeing an increased demand for risk management jobs and claims related roles within property management firms and also at the agency level.   A focus on reducing  and preventing claims has again emerged, and the new Michigan insurance positions being created are a reflection of that.

If you are seeking Michigan jobs in insurance, please contact our office today!

President of Allison Personnel Service, Tricia Millstead is licensed in property & casualty, life & health, and surplus lines. In addition to attaining her CIC and ARM designations, she also holds a BBA with concentrations in marketing and finance and graduate studies in organizational psychology.

Strong Growth For Michigan Insurance Jobs

Posted by on Aug 27, 2012 in News | 0 comments

As the year progresses, we continue to see strong growth for Michigan insurance jobs. We are finding shortages of qualified candidates in certain segments of the industry, as many people either retired early or relocated during the recession. We have very few new people entering the industry, and the age demographic predicts even greater shortage in the coming years.

Insurance Sales Jobs (Producers)

This is a key area that indicates market confidence. We have always had many requests for production candidates, but during the recession base salaries were a rarity (usually a draw with a short taper). This year we are seeing good base salaries with more realistic 2 to 3 year plans for production. Although most producers are encumbered by some type of non-competition agreement, we have seen acquiring agencies negotiating book purchases and/or being willing to invest in a proven salesperson until the expiration of the agreement. This is true in commercial lines P&C as well as group health.

Insurance Benefit Analysts Jobs (Employee Benefits)

Analysts salaries continue to rise this year as demand continues to exceed supply for available Michigan insurance jobs. Analysts with large group experience and self funding experience are seeing salaries in the $55k to $70k+ range.

Commercial Lines

The 3rd quarter showed increased demand for experience insurance account managers with marketing skills. We have also seen an uptick in requests for commercial lines assistants/technicians.

Trends

We have seen an increase in utilization of Michigan insurance recruiters. We are hearing from many clients that we haven’t dealt with in several years. The increased workload brought on by the hardening market has limited HR resources.

There is some concern about the future of small group health and the role of the agent, however, it hasn’t slowed hiring in the employee benefits area.  Despite an uncertain election, we feel confidence from most of our agency clients.

If you are looking for an insurance employment agency, please contact us today!

President of Allison Personnel Service, Tricia Millstead is licensed in property & casualty, life & health, and surplus lines. In addition to attaining her CIC and ARM designations, she also holds a BBA with concentrations in marketing and finance and graduate studies in organizational psychology.

Changes in Insurance Position Salaries Locally

Posted by on May 23, 2012 in News | 0 comments

We have been receiving many calls from clients recently inquiring about salary levels.  We thought it would be a good time to update everyone on the changes we are seeing locally.

Personal Lines

There has been a definite uptick in hiring on the agency side, particularly in personal lines. As the market hardens in personal lines we are seeing agencies adding to staff to meet the increased service demands on existing business.  There are also agencies adding in the personal lines sales area in an attempt to grow their business, as clients are now actively shopping their accounts.  The result in the employment area is that we are finding shortages of qualified insurance account managers.  This means that salaries are creeping upwards.  Right now we are having difficulty finding personal lines CSRs/AMs under $40,000.  Many that we have spoken with that are interested in moving are making $40k-$45k.  This is a significant change from last year, when we were regularly seeing salaries in the mid $30ks.

“Many CSRs that we have spoken with that are interested in moving are making $40k-$45k. This is a significant change from last year, when we were regularly seeing salaries in the mid $30ks.”

Employee Benefits

Another area where we are finding some shortage of qualified candidates is employee benefits.  Particularly at the insurance benefit analyst level we have high demand and few qualified candidates within the target salary range.  We are seeing salaries in the $45-$55k range for experienced analysts with multiple carrier and Excel experience.  Last year, we were finding salaries in the $38-$46k range.

Commercial Lines

In commercial lines, we are seeing an increased demand also.  Salary levels are rising, as truly qualified candidates are not willing to move laterally as they might have done in the past few years.  Candidates that have had no increases and/or have taken a reduction in salary during the recession are now looking to increase their income.  We are seeing small business desk CSRs in the $40-50k range; middle market account managers in the $50-65k range; large account service and marketing candidates are $65k and up.

“With few insurance carriers recruiting and training people out of college, we have a very skewed age demographic within the industry.”

Trends

We have seen an increasing amount of counter offers extended to candidates during the past 6 months.  We are also seeing a minor trend toward less than full-time positions.  Employers are interested in this to save benefit costs and candidates are interested in this for work/life balance reasons.  Some candidates we have worked with have found that they can stay at the same salary level and reduce their work hours.  This is a trend that we see continuing.  We have also seen an increasing amount of requests for temporary workers as the workforce ages and medical leaves are becoming more common.  With few insurance carriers recruiting and training people out of college, we have a very skewed age demographic within the industry.  The National Alliance published an interesting report on the looming age gap last year.

Please contact us if you have any questions that we haven’t addressed here. We are excited to be your Michigan insurance employment agency!

President of Allison Personnel Service, Tricia Millstead is licensed in property & casualty, life & health, and surplus lines. In addition to attaining her CIC and ARM designations, she also holds a BBA with concentrations in marketing and finance and graduate studies in organizational psychology.