Actuaries are an indispensable part of the insurance landscape. When the search for suitable claims actuaries in Germany proved unsuccessful, the HDI Group took a new approach to filling these positions. An innovative idea gave rise to a new recruiting process that is worth taking a closer look at.
We spoke to Astrid Pohlmann, Head of Employer Branding & Sourcing in the HR department of HDI Service AG, about recruiting abroad.
Astrid Pohlmann from the Employer Branding and Sourcing department
Of course, we looked here first and only abroad as a second step. In Germany, it is very difficult to recruit experienced actuaries in the claims area. The market is very tight, with only around 800 claims actuaries, so we did not get a good response to our advertisements. I think actuaries are personalities with a high need for security and are therefore less willing to change jobs.
When the usual approach was unsuccessful, we started thinking about how else we could fill these positions. The idea of looking abroad was born at a joint lunch with CFO Dr. Immo Querner, HR Director Jens Warkentin and executives from Business and HR. It was based on the existing infrastructure of an international group: Via HINT CEO Sven Fokkema, our foreign subsidiaries were asked to use their own contacts to fill our vacancies. For example, our Polish subsidiary WARTA approached a headhunter, and in Turkey HDI Sigorta circulated our vacancies. We simply gave this idea a try - with great success.
Applicants should have very good professional qualifications and knowledge of English. Mastery of the German language was not a requirement. This in turn meant a particular challenge for the team in integrating the new colleagues.Nevertheless, it was a prerequisite that the applicants wanted to learn German in any case. We support them in this with language lessons.As with all candidates, team fit is of course also important for the foreign applicants.
The new recruiting channel for actuaries is very promising. I can well imagine going down this route again if we can't fill jobs from within Germany. We can also offer a search abroad for other professions where the market in Germany is very tight, such as specific IT jobs. In any case, our conclusion is very positive: we would immediately hire foreign candidates again. The searching area just needs some courage and openness to integrate a colleague without German language skills.