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    Airmic is a members’ association supporting those responsible for risk management and insurance within their own companies. We have nearly 1200 individual members who represent over 450 companies.


Risk management facing talent gap unless we act now - Airmic


Airmic partnering universities to attract graduates

The risk management profession must do more to attract young talent, according to Airmic, which this month announced plans to partner six universities as part of its Growing the Profession programme. The association warned that failure to appeal to today's graduates, risks damaging the future effectiveness of the profession.

Julia Graham, Airmic's deputy CEO, said: "Risk management and insurance are barely on the radar of today's graduates despite the fact that it's an excellent career path. That's why we're really excited to announce that we will be working with six high-calibre universities to introduce their students to our world and to introduce our members to theirs."

Shaping the Future

Growing the Profession - Shaping the Future targets universities which offer undergraduate and Master's degrees in risk and insurance and affiliated subjects. The universities include Southampton Business School, Cass Business School, Nottingham University Business School and Exeter University Business School.

Students will be offered places at Airmic events, including the annual conference and the ERM Forum - Airmic's one-day conference for enterprise risk management. They will also be invited to be involved in Airmic's fastTrack - a programme designed for young risk management professionals and those new to the profession - and encouraged to make use of Airmic's technical output and thought leadership. It will also offer mentoring opportunities and the chance to meet students in the same field.

According to Graham, sharing knowledge with students and starting them networking is key to the programme: "We want to bridge the gap between an academic interest in risk and a professional interest in risk. It's about shining a light on the risk management profession," she said.

Mind the (talent) gap

Clive Clarke, Airmic's chairman, put the youth agenda firmly under the spotlight when he took over as chair in June last year. According to Clarke, risk management and insurance are fantastic careers for today's graduates but are wrongly in the shadow of the banking sector which is perceived as more glamourous and better paid. According to Deloitte, only 0.5% of UK business school students said they would work for an insurer, and insurance was ranked 19th out of 26 sectors in terms of future career prospects.

Clarke commented: "To put it quite simply, the continued relevance and success of our profession will suffer if we don't act soon to inject young talent. The business world is changing fast - faster than ever - and risk management is changing with it.

"The type of skills required of a risk manager in 10 years' time will therefore be quite different to the skillset of the 40 and 50 somethings running the industry today. The risk is that this creeps up on the industry and we look around as people retire and find a huge gap in knowledge and experience. As a risk profession, it would be ironic if we don't spot the risk and do something about it!"

Graham, who is driving the programme, has received an overwhelmingly positive response. "The enthusiasm we have met from the universities has been wonderful. All, without exception, have been very keen to share their own knowledge with Airmic and to give their students exposure to the professional risk management world. We are really optimistic about the opportunities this will open up for today's members and - I hope - our future members!"

Tomorrow's Risk Leaders programme launched

As part of the Growing the Profession programme, Airmic is also expanding its training for current members who aspire to have strategic roles within their organisations. In recognition of the changing role of the risk manager, Growing the Profession - Tomorrow's Risk Leaders will be offered through Cass Business School and will provide a 12-month structured training programme focused on professional and executive development for risk and insurance managers. Invitations for expressions of interest will be launched this month. 

It will include a series of lectures, networking events, soft skills development and personal mentoring. Graham said: "As risk management grows in importance and becomes firmly on the board agenda, the career opportunities for our more ambitious members are really exciting. However, they require a different skillset, including the ability to network, to translate technical knowledge into a strategic argument, and to have a meaningful conversation with senior management. This course is designed to help members make that transition."