An inside look: Is the next generation of loss adjusters hiding in plain sight?

November 4, 2022

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by Peter Farrelly, managing director – commercial claims services

The ‘war for talent’ has become one of the most talked-about topics for organisations in every sector. As loss adjusting firms seek to replace top talent who have left due to retirement, higher pay, or a change in career altogether — the questions remain: where will the next generation of adjusters come from? And what can be done to retain them?

In the spotlight

The effects of the pandemic have made attracting and retaining talent a greater strategic focus for employers globally across all industries. Who would have thought, for example, that airlines would have to pay significant sign-on bonuses to retain cabin crew members and ensure continuity of routine routes flown? Several airlines were forced to reduce or cancel services due to staff shortages leaving many travellers stranded. However, for loss adjusters, it’s not as easy to blame staffing; firms can’t avoid major incidents or weather-related surge events.

Thinking outside the box

Recent discussions around the demographic loss adjuster timebomb are a reminder of the talent challenges the industry has faced since first sounding the alarm over two decades ago. In the increasingly competitive market for loss adjusting talent, many firms routinely engage in bidding wars — poaching existing market resources by offering increased salaries, higher bonuses and better company cars and incentive schemes. Thinking outside of the box to come up with innovative strategies and do more with less has become non-negotiable. This includes widening the talent pool by seeking employees with transferrable skills from outside of the insurance industry or from a variety of backgrounds to bring fresh perspectives.

To address perhaps the most significant retention issue: pay, some firms have re-prioritised opportunities to promote top performers so they can enter new pay ranges (and thus, receive more significant pay increases), rather than relying on the typical 3% merit. Flexibility is another significant post-pandemic candidate value lever, both in terms of location (remote or hybrid) and schedule. Employers that can offer superior flexibility tend to be more successful in this market.

Hiding in plain sight

As organizations look to attract new talent, they mustn’t forget about one of their most valuable resources: their existing colleagues. After all, current employees are already familiar with the organization’s culture, processes and systems. To maintain their competitive edge, many loss adjusting firms have turned to their internal talent — engaging existing employees with opportunities for career development and advocating for career progression aligned with the needs of the business. Only then looking to the increasingly competitive marketplace for niche talent when it can’t be developed internally (for example, a specialist in agriculture, a complex liability expert or a structural defect adjuster that requires specific knowledge or qualifications).

Engaging fresh and untapped talent pools within your organisation is certainly one way to solve the shortage of colleague resources; as well as controlling costs when external resources may not be available or up to speed straightaway. This is where a robust ‘internal-first’ talent management strategy can pay dividends when comparing the alternative.

Learn more — search for a meaningful career in loss adjusting.

Tags: adjusters, Adjusting, careers, Employee, Employees, Loss adjusting, Property, Property claims, Recruiting, Retention, talent, View on property