Shortage of quality claims professionals in insurance industry
Quality claims professionals are needed across the country, but there is a shortage of supply, according to Hays’ latest quarterly insurance report July-September 2015.
“This is partly due to the salaries on offer, which fail to attract candidate interest, as well as employers making sure they retain their top claims staff,” the report said.
“In addition, the salary level offered does not qualify for offshore professionals to get job offers from accredited firms.”
Other areas of insurance in demand include underwriters in commercial/professional indemnity and D&O at the intermediate level in Auckland. Both newly created and replacement roles are available.
Loss adjustors are in demand in both Auckland and Christchurch due to increased business volumes.
And commercial business development brokers are also sought as employers focus on business development. New positions are being created in order to drive growth and increase market share.
Reasons for the current vacancy activity in New Zealand’s insurance market is put down to ongoing restructures, off-shoring and mergers.
“Mergers are creating some new positions but are also leading to others being disestablished,” the report said.
“Relocations have seen some candidates take on more senior roles elsewhere in the country, while others have moved overseas for a better lifestyle or to return to their native country.
“There has also been a lot of talk within the industry about some firms targeting new business growth and if this proves to be correct it will create new jobs in a number of areas.”
Most of the vacancy activity was for permanent roles, with few temporary roles available, however some firms were hiring fixed term contractors while they restructure their business.
The report said employers were willing to relocate people within New Zealand but most remained resistant to sourcing from overseas unless the candidate already had a work permit or NZ residency.
Some employers had started relying more heavily on psychometric testing, although skills, experience, and team fit remained the key requirements.
Trends amongst candidates saw the location of a role as very important to most insurance professionals who want to secure a new role that is close to home.
“Many are even prepared to accept a slight salary drop if it means avoiding a commute into the CBD,” the report said.
Despite there being a skills shortage, employers continued to have high expectations when it came to the skills and experience of suitable candidates.
“Consequently those candidates who have not been in the market for some time feel frustrated at not being considered for roles because they don’t have the exact experience required.”
Meanwhile, as employers are proactively working hard to retain their quality candidates, hiring employers were advised to ‘offer something special’ to entice the top talent to their roles.