Insurance Talent Need – PE and M&A Advisory Service Teams

The top national brokers have had PE and M&A advisory units for a number of years and now we are starting to see large regional players starting to build out these units. These units are responsible for conducting comprehensive reviews of P&C and Benefits insurance coverages of acquisition targets for private equity and other financial sponsor clients. The goal is to mitigate risk pre-close, during the transaction, and post-close. 

Since these services are M&A-focused, they stem from the Private Equity sector. That sector has grown by $4 Trillion in the past decade and “sponsored companies” have grown by 170% in the last few years. Insurance brokers are now moving rapidly to build teams of due diligence analysts, transactional advisors (P&C and EB), and practice leaders to capitalize on this business segment. 

Due to the relative newness of these roles, talent is at a premium. If you are looking to build out these units at your own brokerage, consider the below strategies when recruiting. 

1. Be Organized with Regard to the Search:

Have formal job descriptions and interview structure prepared prior to the search. Also, understand your story and be able to communicate that to candidates.

2. Understand the Market:

Research your competition. Know who has these units, where their staff is located (your target list), and have a basic understanding of compensation models used in these units. 

3. Be Flexible and Move Quickly:

We are currently in one of the most candidate-centric markets of the last twenty years for the insurance industry. We have one national brokerage client that had 106 openings this time last year and now has 606 openings. With that in mind, be organized, consider remote work environments for top talent, and move quickly when you have an “A Candidate” in the pipeline! 

According to Insurance Business Magazine 59 is the average age of an insurance agent. A recent LIMRA survey pegged the average Employee Benefit producer at 56 years old, while a white paper from McKinsey & Co. puts the average age of a Commercial Insurance Agent at 59. Within the next ten years one fourth of the commercial insurance work force will be retiring. This means that hiring managers will need to have a stronger push at the college level to fill entry level roles and build “bench strength”.  One problem that companies may experience when working to fill these openings, will be with the Millennial Generation. The millennial generation just doesn’t seem to be that interested in the insurance industry. A survey by the Institutes indicated that only 5% of millennials and 2% of overall students said they were interested in an insurance career.

Those numbers might feel daunting to a hiring manager, but the same survey indicated that 61% of students would like a job that analyzed risk and recommended solutions. So it sounds to us, that the industry has just done a poor job of promoting the sector to college graduates. In short, the industry needs to pivot and speak to a younger audience in a way that connects them. 

Well how do you connect to an audience that has grown up in a world that looks completely different than it did just 30 years earlier? Online of course! According to Vertafore millennials are more than twice as likely as other generations to be recruited on social media. That means that attending a virtual college fair or connecting on LinkedIn, particularly in the wake of Corvid-19, may be a more powerful recruitment tool than an in person fair could ever be.

While our search firm focuses on senior service staff, production and management roles within the distribution channel of insurance, the following universities offer Insurance and Risk Management programs and can be a good place to start a search for entry positions.   

1. University of Pennsylvania

2. St. Joseph’s University

3. University of Georgia

4. Georgia State University

5. University of Wisconsin — Madison

6. Temple University

7. Florida State University

8.  University of Texas — Austin

9.  New York University

10.Pennsylvania State University — University Park

According to the U.S Census Bureau by 2050 the retired population will have doubled reaching 88 million. Approximately 400,000 of those will be in the Insurance industry. Is your pipeline prepared to fill that need? If not and you’re interested in recruitment services, please visit our website at: rogangroup.com  or reach out to Dan Rogan at 800-440-0082 /drogan@rogangroup.com