Shrinking market must drive to retain key staff

The Association of Run-Off Companies (ARC) and KPMG delivered the results of their fifth survey today, and revealed that – in line with the rest of the insurance industry – key employees are leaving.

The survey highlighted a reduction in the number of people employed in dedicated non-life run-off vehicles – 2,350 in 2006 compared to 2,600 in 2005 – which yet again raised questions over the ability of the insurance market to attract and retain talent. Indeed, one of the future challenges highlighted by KPMG was the need for the industry to retain key employees.

The shrinking non-life run-off market – valued at £32.7bn in 2006 and down 14.4% on 2005 – will no doubt have contributed to the reduction in headcount. As a result, the report highlights the need for a flexible workforce and the need to retain of key staff – and it is the latter that will be the most difficult. AXA’s Nick Bentley said: “Keeping high ability people is a problem, especially when an estate is closing.”

Run-off accounts for 18% of the entire UK non-life market (19% in 2005) with £5.2bn contained in open Lloyd’s syndicates (£2.3bn in 2005) and £4.8bn in Equitas.