It’s Time to Recognize Our Industry Advantage

10 months ago

It’s Time to Recognize Our Industry Advantage

By Will Smith, Chief Growth Officer, One Call  

The labor shortage plaguing American businesses shows few signs of improving soon. By the end of April, job openings rose to an unprecedented 9.3 million, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. And, according to the Wall Street Journal, 7.5 million Americans quit their jobs in April and May, up from 4.3 million in the same period the year before. 

The workers’ compensation industry is not immune to this crisis. Like many other companies, we’re addressing these challenges by changing the way we do business. For instance, most of One Call’s team members now work from home. Open roles are posted as remote work, offering the benefit of no commute and a more flexible schedule.  

But often, it’s proven not to be enough to recruit top talent from a tight labor pool. The good news for workers’ compensation – we have a leg up on other industries that many of us don’t even recognize, much less use to our advantage.  

We are an advocacy-based industry. More simply stated, we help people in a very meaningful way. Amid the cacophony of meetings and deadlines, many of us fail to appreciate the positive impact we have on injured workers and their families every day. Now more than ever, it’s time to dial in on this differentiator, and here’s why:  

Post-Traumatic Growth 

There’s no doubt – the COVID-19 pandemic has proven traumatic, shifting from a long-lasting event to an indefinite era. While it’s caused post-traumatic stress for many, the silver lining is that it’s led to post-traumatic growth for many others. According to Adam Grant, a professor at the Wharton School, this means that while people wish the pandemic didn’t happen, they’re going to use the experience to be better in some way. He goes on to explain this could lead to “a heightened sense of personal strength; it could be a deeper sense of gratitude; it could be finding new meaning or investing more in relationships.” In fact, more than half of people report feeling post-traumatic growth from the pandemic.  

This is a real opportunity to promote our industry’s advocacy-based work when recruiting top talent. From posting a job to the interview process, we should be telling the story of how our work impacts lives.  

The Millennial Factor  

Born from 1981 to 1996, this generation – now 25 to 40-years-old – has far-reaching influence. By 2025, they’re expected to make up 75 percent of the global workforce. Companies are competing to win over these individuals, who are more focused on building a purpose-driven career than previous generations. In fact, 84 percent of millennials say the importance of making a difference outweighs professional recognition.  

Companies within the workers’ compensation industry offer this generation an attractive combination – the service-oriented mindset of a non-profit and the benefits of a corporation.  

I can think back to a time when we showed employees a video of an injured worker, a paraplegic who was able to walk again after receiving an exoskeleton. Our company was a part of his care journey, and you could feel the pride, emotion, and inspiration amongst our employees for weeks afterward. This is the same feeling we can evoke in prospective employees by simply doing a better job of explaining, from a human perspective, what we do.  

Economists have said it could take years for the economy to reach full employment again. We have an opportunity to get ahead of other industries by focusing on the high quality of life we’ve restored for so many people post-injury. 

Let’s all be a part of attracting and retaining top talent by adopting a passionate, service-oriented mindset. In doing so, we’ll build a foundation that will sustain our industry’s life-changing work for years to come.  

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