Aviva Canada: Insurance professionals can be superheroes at claim time

It's time to dispel the myth that insurance is boring

Aviva Canada: Insurance professionals can be superheroes at claim time


By Bethan Moorcraft

Superman. Wonder Woman. Spiderman. Batman. Karen from the Aviva Canada claims department. What do they have in common? They’re all superheroes. They all help people in times of need.

In March 2019, Aviva Canada launched a hiring campaign to attract talent to its claims department. The so-called Superheroes campaign was the most-viewed claims recruitment video in Aviva Canada history, and it resulted in approximately 500 applications from strong candidates. The message – one of hope, strength and social support – clearly resonated well with the prospective talent.

The success of Aviva Canada’s Superheroes campaign is more significant given the talent struggle the industry as a whole is battling against. With the unfortunate black cloud of “insurance is boring and old-fashioned,” or the extreme, “insurance is evil,” hanging over its head, the industry has found it difficult to attract the talent it needs in order to innovate, transform and keep up with other financial service industries. But Aviva Canada managed to change that message via this campaign.

“If you think about a typical way we might source talent, we might use a head hunter, or post a job advert online. That type of engagement is not really exciting or motivating. It’s not tapping into people’s imagination and inspiring them to apply for the reasons we want them to apply,” said Bryant Vernon (pictured), chief claims officer at Aviva Canada. “Our Superhero campaign emphasized how claims officers can be heroes for the customers during their time of need, and how they can do amazing things on behalf of other people.”

Vernon understands that insurance has a public perception issue. He said that before he got into insurance, he thought it looked a bit boring. Like many, he fell into insurance through convenience, but he quickly saw that it was a serendipitous moment and that his initial perception of the industry was misguided.

“Once you’re here, especially within the claims department, you quickly see how much of an impact you can have on people’s lives,” he told Insurance Business. “You’re doing things to help people out when they need it the most, and it really gives you a strong sense of purpose. I think one of the things, especially with the newer generations of people entering the workforce, is that people want to have a sense of purpose. They want to feel like their job is more than just a paycheck. And in my opinion, there’s no place like claims to do that. 

“It’s hard to find a job or a role where you feel like you’re making a difference every single day. And that’s one of the things that we wanted to do with this campaign. We wanted to reposition this to say: ‘You get to be a hero in people’s lives.’ We wanted to dispel this myth that this is a boring or lacklustre type of industry to be in. It can actually be quite exciting and there are so many different levels to it. Obviously, there’s the level of helping people out, but there’s also lots of tough problems, especially within a claims operation.”

Effective claims adjusting requires a lot communication and coordination with multiple stakeholders, whether that’s to get a car fixed, repair or rebuild a home, or to provide appropriate healthcare to an injured person. While all of that can get very complicated, it’s important to remember that the customer lies at the heart of every claim, Vernon stressed.

He added: “That stuff can get very complicated, but solving those problems is not only fun and satisfying from the point of view that you’re helping someone else, but also from an intellectual point of view.”

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