Insurers in the state are continuing to open positions in their companies, but workers aren’t there to fill them.
The Michigan insurance industry is all set to open up a range of new jobs over the next few years. However, it is already facing a considerable challenge in their effort to fill the positions as insurance companies compete to attract talent.
This was among the primary findings in a study conducted by Ferris State University researchers.
The university’s insurance, actuarial and risk management student team surveyed companies in the Michigan insurance industry. Participants included agents and brokers as well as industry service providers.
Their findings revealed a considerable challenge in recruiting talent. The main barrier is in hiring individuals who already have the business knowledge and experience to work within the insurance sector in the state. “Employers are in need of applicants that possess the basic business skills such as proper etiquette and strong communication skills,” said the survey results report.
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Companies in the Michigan insurance industry knows that these basic skills are critical to their survival let alone success.
“These are relatively small yet important parts of the job that if not learned can cost firms business. Teaching these necessities can also be frustrating, tiresome, and expensive for managers,” said the report.
The largest issue is that insurance company jobs are opening up in claims, underwriting and IT but the talent isn’t as plentiful as the positions. This is baffling the insurance industry, which is paying salaries far higher than the average in the state, according to a 2016 Anderson Economic Group analysis. It showed that the average insurance company job in those categories pays $85,000, whereas the average income among all Michigan workers is strikingly lower at $59,250.
The recent report from Ferris State only underscores the recent Michigan insurance industry struggles. While insurance companies and providers are going strong, a considerable percentage of its workforce has been retiring and is expected to continue doing so over the next 5 to 10 years. This, along with the projected growth, means that insurance jobs are opening up faster than they can be filled.