Friday, July 11, 2008

Insuring thy careers

Insurance is a matter of trust and it is trust that is infused in each relationship that Tata AIG establishes with its employees...

Whenever calamity strikes, insurance companies the world over, mourn. But not in India! Here insurance companies laugh all the way to the bank because of wretchedly low penetration & grossly underinsured population. The ‘Asian-Pacific Insurance Outlook’ report released by Standard & Poor’s on October 4, 2007 states that under-capitalisation could hinder growth prospects of domestic insurance market. Till late 1990s, insurance penetration in India was terribly low at below 2%, with LIC being the only company offering a security shield. 1999 was a watershed year for the insurance sector as the Insurance Regulatory & Development Authority (IRDA) Bill was passed, allowing entry of private players. Opening up of insurance to FDI, albeit with a 26% cap, obviously helped matters, as in the first year itself, 16 new insurers entered the market. Some of the prominent players who entered the sector were ICICI Prudential, Tata AIG Life, Birla SunLife, HDFC Standard and Max New York Life.

Tata AIG Life Insurance Company started operations in India from April 1, 2001. The company is a 74:26 joint venture between the Tata Group – India’s leading conglomerate and American International Group, Inc. (AIG) – the world’s leading global insurance and financial services organisation. The alliance between the two stood for trust and experience in the minds of the Indian consumers.

The management of Tata AIG was quick to realise that the only way the company could make a mark for itself in the insurance sphere was by hiring the best people who could make a difference. Thus began the journey to recruit world-class insurance agents. And the job would have been next to impossible without the team of specialist HR people, who had to regularly deal with sticky situations that require diplomacy, patience, quick thinking and sometimes, a sense of humour.

In an exclusive tête-à-tête with 4Ps B&M, Ashok Ramachandran, Senior VP – Human Resources, Tata AIG Life Insurance Company Ltd., boldly stated that like any other service organisation, Tata AIG’s strength lies in its dynamic workforce and the company is relying heavily on its people’s strength to achieve the stiff target of capturing a 10% market share in the insurance sphere by 2010. But achieving such a target is no mean feat for any company. Tata AIG has already started to put its plans into action, by increasing its employee base three folds from 4,000 odd employees now to about 12,000 by 2008. That throws a challenging task for the HR department, as they not only have to fill up the vacancies in such a short period of time but also they cannot compromise on quality. This is more of a challenge today as almost every player in the sector is on a hiring spree and would not mind paying extra to get the best employees or better than others.
For Complete IIPM Article, Click on IIPM Article

Source : IIPM Editorial, 2008
An IIPM and Professor Arindam Chaudhuri (Renowned Management Guru and Economist) Initiative

No comments: