Show Notes | March 8, 2021 | Episode 94
VirtForce is partnering with a not traditionally remote company that is pivoting to offer virtual careers to military spouses.
Travelers has always been committed to hiring from our nation’s military community, but with the COVID pandemic that effort has expanded to creating remote jobs specifically for milspouses.
In this episode we speak with Jennifer White, Travelers’ Vice President of Talent Acquisition, who has been with Travelers for 17 years where she started as a recruiter and now leads about 62 recruiters and directors across the US, Canada and UK.
Jennifer is a military daughter and military spouse whose husband spent 27 years in the US Air Reserves.
Ashley Sugg, a Travelers Resolution Specialist, also joins the conversation. Ashley is a military spouse of 10 years whose worked for Travelers for the past four. She started on the frontlines of customer service as an Insurance Service Representative – a role Travelers is looking to fill.
Travelers is a property and casualty insurance company in business for 167 years that started as a travel accident insurance company in the mid-1800s. Travelers is the 2nd largest commercial insurer and 6th largest personal insurer in the US. The company is among the Dow 30, which acts as an indicator of the US stock market.
Travelers sells a promise to take care of people in their greatest time of need, which includes insurance policies for homeowners, renters, car owners, businesses – even weddings.
In order to be in business for that long, Travelers has shown a great deal of agility and innovation to stay competitive in the marketplace. Since the COVID-19 pandemic Travelers had to shift quickly from traditional offices to working from home.
At first, the company thought employees needed to be in the office to perform at their best, but quickly realized that was not true or necessary. Travelers implemented the technology needed to keep up with customer demand and the recruiting necessary to support it.
Ashley was going into the office everyday Monday through Friday. When the COVID pandemic hit in March of 2020, she quickly found herself working from home. Throughout the transition process, Ashley felt supported by leadership, receiving emails of encouragement on a regular basis – even from the CEO.
Ashley recently promoted to the Resolution Specialist role. She had support from her supervisors to figure out how she wanted to progress in the company. Each year, Travelers hires about 4,000 to 6,000 employees across its enterprise. About 40% of those hires are internal talent.
In August, one of Travelers training leads shifted focus to hiring military spouses as remote employees who can work from anywhere in the US instead of staffing call centers in 5 distinct locations.
Travelers realized that military spouse resumes would look different. Instead of resume gaps in the traditional sense recruiters were taught to look for volunteer work and international moves as experience.
Travelers has always been committed to the military. Of its 30,000 employees, 1,000 have current or former military experience.
While Travelers is focused on two positions for military spouses – Sales Representative and Insurance Service Representative – the company has hundreds of open positions on its careers page. On the Travelers Career page, any job that is described as “nationwide” for location is assumed to be remote.
The Sales Representative role is not your traditional cold-calling sales job. It is inbound calls only.
The Insurance Service Representative role involves assisting established customers who need help with requests such as adding a new car to an auto policy.
When it comes to benefits, Travelers offers day one coverage for a variety of insurances. On day 1 you get 20 days of paid time off. Travelers also offers a 401k match and pension plan.
While some of the roles will transition back to an office after the pandemic, Travelers has had some discussion about making sure all military spouses remain remote – a decision VirtForce supports 100%.
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