Section 4

Satisfaction: Why the IA System Is a Great Place for Women

Recognition 1

Overall, employees in the insurance industry report high levels of job satisfaction.

A study by CapRelo found that the median job tenure for insurance employees was 5.5 years – among the highest for private-sector jobs.

Even when employees leave a particular job, they usually stay within the industry. A study by Vertafore found that 74% of millennials and 79% of Gen-Xers said they plan to stay in the industry for as long as possible.

However, the insurance industry was not immune to the “great resignation,” which saw record numbers of employees in the U.S. quit their jobs during the pandemic. Women were especially likely to quit. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2.5 million women left the workforce during the pandemic.

A March 2021 survey by Accenture found that 32% of women in insurance left their jobs temporarily or permanently during the pandemic. It’s unclear how many have since returned.

While there were many reasons women left the workforce during the pandemic, one of the biggest factors was childcare and family responsibilities, which still fall disproportionately to women. Six in 10 of the women Accenture surveyed said they felt increased pressure from being the primary caregiver for school-aged children, and nearly 40% said flexible scheduling and paid leave were the top ways employers could help.

Insurance agencies are great places for work-life balance

Workplace flexibility is a benefit for all employees, not just working mothers.

In the last two years, many agencies re-evaluated their office structures. Some have adopted hybrid working arrangements, allowing employees to work remotely when needed. As workplaces have shifted to more remote work options, workers have come to expect flexibility in location and hours.

A study by Future Forum found that more than 70% of workers who weren’t happy with the flexibility of their current job would likely look for a new job within the next year.

The good news is that insurance agencies are well suited for offering flexible schedules and encouraging a healthy work-life balance.

More than 80% of all the women we surveyed said their job allows them to balance their personal life and work. And 92% of women in frontline staff roles told us they receive flexibility when they need it.

Many of the women we surveyed cited flexibility as one of the reasons they would recommend a career in the insurance industry.

“This has been a wonderful career path for me as a woman, a mother and a business owner,” wrote a 61-year-old producer and previous agency owner. “I would recommend agency ownership and leadership to anyone of any gender for its flexibility and ability for advancement and recognition based on good sales and management styles.”

It’s important to remember that every agency employee will have different needs for flexibility. There won’t necessarily be a one-size-fits-all approach to remote work arrangements and flexibility. Agency leaders should have open conversations with employees to understand their needs and find solutions for a healthy work-life balance.

Flexibility is key to retain women

women left the U.S. workforce during the pandemic (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)
  • 6 in 10 women said they felt increased pressure from being the primary caregiver for school-aged children
  • They listed flexible scheduling and paid leave as the top ways employers could help (Source: Accenture)
  • More than 80% of respondents said their job allows them to balance their personal life and work (Source: Liberty Mutual)
  • 92% of frontline staff say they receive flexibility when they need it (Source: Liberty Mutual)
  • More than half chose personal/family perks as the most important initiative for women (Source: Liberty Mutual)

Click through to the next sections to get more resources for how to empower women in insurance.