How can insurance organisations build an adaptive workforce to power progress in a digital world? Here’s my financial services (FS) C-suite checklist.

To navigate the rapidly evolving digital landscape, insurers must be capable of continuous change. The path to greater productivity and innovation is via the workforce—an adaptive workforce able to adapt to easily, rapidly and effectively respond to change.

However, designing an adaptive workforce demands focus and commitment.

While a common thread will be a focus on using technology to amplify workers’ potential, a more critical element is designing a workforce able to keep pace with change. The real key to workforce agility lies in a strategy that puts people and culture first, enabled by technology—to amplify workers everywhere.

Here is my checklist for insurance leaders:

Take stock of skills gaps and use technology to predict tomorrow. Leverage predictive intelligence to understand your skills needs now and over time, relative to your business objectives. Consider new skills, continuous reskilling, alignment of organisational culture and behaviours, alternative approaches to resourcing, and new ways of working and new working structures to maximise productivity and outputs. A common global data model, shared global jobs and strategic workforce software tools will put organisations in a stronger position to leverage predictive analytics.

Expand the concept of a workforce. Creative sourcing of talent must now include digital platforms, as well as creative engagement with talent ecosystems. Savvy organisations will create physical and virtual networks to facilitate community building, deliver access to valuable skills training, generate feedback and create access to potential new roles and projects.

Extend the employee experience beyond traditional boundaries. Your future workforce is a combination of full- and part-time employees, freelance talent and ecosystem partners. Organisations need an approach for integrating all types of new talent, expanding collaboration and integration, and creating a consistent experience.

Cultivate development and reskilling as currency. Today, in-demand skills rotate with more frequency, while the advent of talent marketplaces has the individual poised to interact with more companies than ever before. To that end, training, mentoring, coaching and reskilling will become a currency—as critical as providing a paycheque—and employers will be differentiated by their ability to deliver against that demand.

Build a strong risk and governance foundation. The adaptive workforce should be built on robust risk and governance measures that: establish executive sponsorship and decision-making forums; define the rules of the adaptive workforce model; ensure accountability; measure and manage performance; and ensure regulatory compliance.

Building your future workforce

Creating an adaptive workforce that can enable future success will require a concerted, well-considered and sustained effort. I hope you have found this series of posts useful. I am currently working with a number of insurance organisations on these issues and welcome your insights, comments and questions.

For more insight on building an adaptive workforce, read Shaping the adaptive financial services organisation of the future.  

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