In the insurance and analytics space, the first half of 2021 seemed like it would be a carryover from the challenges of the pandemic. In early 2021, there was some reluctance among actuaries to change jobs, based on concerns about the financial markets, but by third quarter and through the end of the year, candidates began seeking better positions with higher compensation, remote options, and a better work/life balance. In a matter of a few months, we saw a dramatic pivot that resulted in the most active employment market since the financial crisis.
We expect to see the current strong actuarial employment market to be sustained through 2022, with increased compensation and benefits structured to engage the best talent. Employers will focus on retention of staff and will re-evaluate salary structures. Priorities will be enabling work/life balance for employees, allowing for remote and hybrid work schedules, and emphasizing the organization’s commitment to its employees through “Stay Interviews.” Counteroffers will become more common and enhanced packages for current employees will be implemented to retain staff. Restructuring of compensation will not only be more widespread, but critical for retention and recruiting initiatives.
Candidates will be more likely to make a move in less than 2 years, as the stigma of “job hopping” becomes less significant, and we expect to see candidates open to making a move after 2 years or less for a better opportunity, especially if they don’t need to relocate. The predominance of remote opportunities will drive the market in 2022 as actuaries see more opportunities with higher salaries, career advancement and improved work/life balance.
In 2022, the struggle will be to retain and attract highly sought-after talent, particularly those with advanced quantitative and data analytic skills. The Department of Labor projects a 24% growth in the actuarial profession from 2020 – 2030. This far outpaces the predicted 8% growth across all industries. The nearly 0% unemployment rate in the industry, coupled with increased demand, will make finding top talent much more challenging.
The hiring trends we expect to see include:
- A dramatic increase in remote positions and roles with flexible/hybrid in-office schedules, and considerably less travel for consultants.
- Higher compensation packages, which will challenge internal equity.
- An emphasis on Diversity and Inclusion initiatives.
- Work/life balance will be an important consideration for candidates.
- Companies taking strong positions on the social issues that matter to the younger generations of workers, such as ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance)
- Positions that require candidates to be in the office will take significantly longer to fill.
– Patty Kennelly, Partner – DW Simpson