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Ohio Insurance Industry to Need 26K Skilled Workers
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The insurance industry in Ohio needs 26,000 skilled workers by 2020, Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor told a meeting of insurance executives last week. Taylor, also the director of the state insurance department, said baby boomers near retirement are responsible for availability of 80% of the positions.
“A growing economy and strong demand from Ohio’s insurance industry means 26,000 Ohioans have an opportunity to find a good-paying job to support their family,” Taylor said in her remarks. To illustrate the scope of the need, she said the workers needed would fill Nationwide Arena here and still be short 7,500 employees. Those 7,500, if they stood side by side, would form a line three miles long, or long enough to stretch from the arena to the campus of The Ohio State University, Taylor said.
Taylor delivered her remarks at Nationwide Arena to representatives of Insuring Ohio Futures, a career-awareness program started by 13 insurance companies based in the Buckeye State and industry executives.
Her numbers are based on a workforce study that uses data Bill LaFayette obtained from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. LaFayette owns Regionomics, a Columbus-based economic and workforce strategy firm. “The key message of this study is that we must ensure that enough workers are available for this crucial industry,” LaFayette stated. “If the workers are not attracted and trained, the industry will fail to grow to its potential, negatively impacting the overall Ohio economy. The workers themselves may not ever consider this opportunity without being properly introduced to it."
With more than 95,000 employees, the Ohio insurance industry ranks seventh in the nation and comprises of $17.4 billion of the state gross domestic product.
Before the launch of Insuring Ohio Futures, no college or university in Ohio offered a risk management program or offered a degree in insurance. Currently, Kent State University, Franklin University and the University of Cincinnati offer baccalaureate programs related to insurance. Programs are expected to be launched this year at Ohio Northern University and Ohio Dominican University with Bowling Green State University likely to add a program in 2015.
Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.
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