Insurance is least popular financial services sector for female millennial employees

Published at 00:01 AM on 09 June 2015

The insurance industry is the least popular financial services employer with young women due to a perceived lack of career progression causing many females to leave their jobs or putting them off joining the sector in the first place, according to global research by PwC. 

PwC’s report ‘Female millennials in financial services: strategies for a new era of talent’ reveals that limited opportunities for career progression is the number one reason female millennials (born between 1980 and 1995) leave their job in financial services.

Key findings: 

  • 13% of women who took park in the survey said they wouldn’t work in insurance because of its image, (10% wouldn’t work in banking and capital markets, and 5% in asset management)
  • 80% of female millennials globally believe insurance firms talk about diversity, but opportunities are not equal for all (73% in financial services generally)
  • 64% of female millennials in insurance say their employer isn’t doing enough to encourage diversity (higher than the average of 61% over financial services overall)
  • Female millennials in FS believe insurers are doing less to promote equality and more feel promotion is biased towards men in insurance than other FS sectors
  • 30% feel women are given fewer opportunities to undertake international assignments within the insurance industry than men (22% in financial services overall)

The report, which draws on interviews with over 8,000 female millennials globally, reveals that the financial services industry faces a number of hurdles in attracting and retaining this generation of women. Female millennials are entering the workplace in larger numbers than ever before and come with their own set of expectations and ambitions for their careers.

Jonathan Howe, PwC’s UK insurance leader, said: 

“At a time when the insurance industry needs to focus on developing brand reputation and delivering customer-centric product offerings and communication channels, attracting and retaining more women at all levels of the organisation could provide the catalyst needed for a real shift in attitudes and consumer engagement. 

“This should serve as a wake up call to those in the insurance sector to bring their diversity policies to life, re-evaluate how they develop their people and create a structure where women can thrive. Having visible female role models at all levels of an organisation will be an important step to show employees and potential employees that leadership positions are achievable for all.”

Jon Terry, PwC’s financial services HR consulting leader, said:

“It is clear that financial services firms have a way to go to attract and keep hold of this new era of female talent. These women are ambitious and looking to progress and if these expectations aren’t met women will simply be put off joining or will vote with their feet and leave. Within this highly networked generation, poor perceptions of current staff can quickly spread and discourage potential recruits. 

“Having visible female role models at all levels of an organisation will be an important step to show employees and potential employees that leadership positions are achievable for all.”

Ends   

Notes to editor: 

1.      PwC’s report ‘Female millennials in financial services: strategies for a new era of talent’ Is based on international research with 10,105 millennial respondents from over 70 countries worldwide, 8,756 of whom were female millennials, nearly 600 of whom work in financial services.

2.        Jonathan Howe and Jon Terry are available for interviews. Please contact Ellie Raven on +44 (0) 207 804 3663 or ellie.raven@uk.pwc.com

Ellie Raven, Media Relations, PwC

Tel: +44 (0) 207 804 3663

Email: ellie.raven@uk.pwc.com


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