How Recruitment and Training Is Improving Claims Adjusting
Recruitment and training are paramount to the success of any company. Particularly so in the insurance industry, given the current war for talent. The two disciplines go hand-in-hand to ensure a continual pipeline of talent and succession planning.
Engle Martin, a leading national independent loss adjusting and claims management provider, has achieved great success by adopting a forward-thinking recruitment and training strategy.
As with many companies, Engle Martin is dealing with the shortage of available job candidates. Simply put, there are many job openings but not enough qualified candidates to fill them.
Additionally, the insurance industry has been slow to develop its own talent, which has only exacerbated the problem. That has created a bidding war for the best talent, with many companies struggling to appeal to top candidates.
“That’s where we have made a conscious decision on how to differentiate ourselves as an employer of choice,” said Shavonne Gammage, Vice President of People and Culture at Engle Martin. “We don’t just compete on price alone, because ultimately someone will outbid us. Our approach is to offer a clear career path with training and development partnered with an unparalleled level of care, compassion, and respect for all team members.”
Selling the Job
With claims adjusting, it’s key to sell the discipline as a rewarding career that plays a vital role in helping the local community and wider economy get back up and running after a loss event.
Another key challenge for the industry is evolving to meet the expectations of the work environment post COVID-19 pandemic, with some individuals happy to adopt to a hybrid approach, while others prefer to continue working 100% remotely.
“With younger talent, they’re looking for an employer that will be flexible to meet their needs,” said Gammage. “They also want to have a voice and to have assurance that their employer is taking action on the feedback they provide.”
“With the older generation, their priorities are slightly different, but it’s still the same philosophy. You need to provide them with a work-life balance and a platform for success.”
Engle Martin adopts a more hands-on approach to its training where new adjusters work through interactive fictional claims scenarios. This is supplemented by webinars and classroom training. The learning is reinforced through follow-ups with trainers and managers to make sure that the right approach is taken in claims scenarios.
Training starts centrally in the first year, supported by Human Resources and drawing on both in-house and external resources. It’s then handed over to the regional offices to deliver through the employee’s line manager. There’s a big focus on both technical and soft skills such as communication, in particular dealing with emotion and potential confrontation that may arise in the event of a loss.
Engle Martin also has a mentorship program where senior adjusters and managers share their knowledge and expertise with junior adjusters, where they work together to investigate a claim, thus experiencing what is required first-hand.
The company also conducts an audit process to identify any training gaps and ensures the individual adjuster receives additional training as needed. Further than that, the training team and auditing team actively seek feedback on what can be done to improve the programs and individual sessions.
Engle Martin focuses its leadership training on how to empower its team members to perform their roles with accountability for their actions and outcomes. This approach ensures that they have room to grow in their roles and learn from their mistakes.
“The key is to stay abreast of the latest changes and developments in the industry and integrate those into our training program,” said Elissa Morgan, Senior Vice President of Training and Auditing at Engle Martin. “The training never stops, and we’re always looking at how we can support our team members and ensure that they receive the most up-to-date and relevant training to do their job and develop as an individual within the company.”
By drilling down into individual strengths and weaknesses, then matching those up with the skills required to do the job, it can highlight areas for improvement and empower individuals to build their own development plan with defined goals and targets.
Clear Career Plan
Engle Martin provides all its team members with a structured career plan focused on their immediate needs and future requirements, in order to develop the necessary skillsets and experience. Additionally, our culture provides an environment where individuals feel empowered to shape their own career path and make the most of those opportunities.
While most experienced adjusters will already have a chosen career path, Engle Martin seeks to expose its new recruits to a wide range of disciplines to help them make a more informed decision on the direction they want to take. It also has a succession plan to determine where they will move within the organization over a certain timeframe and as the skills for advancement are achieved.
“We put the team member in the driver’s seat,” said Gammage. “They can decide entirely what direction they want to take, and we provide them with the necessary training and opportunities to get there.”
Engle Martin is actively focused on ensuring diversity and inclusion throughout the organization, starting at the top and supported by employee resource groups. To achieve this, there’s an emphasis on driving awareness and fostering psychological safety throughout the organization.
Engle Martin is always keen to promote from within but also advertises positions externally through CareerBuilder, Indeed, LinkedIn and Workday. It also regularly exhibits at career fairs, hosts lunch and learn programs with college students, and actively looks for people in other industries with transferable skills.
“Ultimately, it’s all about partnership,” said Morgan. “We all need to be on the same page when it comes to how we’re going to attract and retain the right talent and deliver the best possible training program.”
To learn more about Engle Martin and its recruitment and training program, visit https://www.englemartin.com.
This article was produced by the R&I Brand Studio, a unit of the advertising department of Risk & Insurance, in collaboration with Engle Martin. The editorial staff of Risk & Insurance had no role in its preparation.