CII: City no longer 'old boys club' of the past

The career routes taken by professionals in the insurance industry have been revealed by a poll of Chartered Insurance Institute members - a positive sign of the end of the 'old boys club' days of yore.

Most insurance professionals entered the sector straight after education, suggesting that the profession is not as unattractive to young graduates as once thought. This was the case for 47% of the 1,949 CII members polled over social media in July of this year, in a survey of insurance financial services professionals conducted by the institute with the Personal Finance Society.

Roughly a third of insurance professionals entered the sector after previously embarking on a different career.

The data shows a similar pattern for the financial services sector. Four in 10 financial advisers stated they had entered the profession straight after education. There are also many who join the sector after their original career. Nearly half of financial advisers who took part in the survey switched to the profession later in their lives (47%).

Apprenticeships or trainee schemes were shown to be the entry route to the profession for just 8% of insurance professionals and 5% of financial advisers.

Sian Fisher, CEO of the CII, said: “When I meet insurance professionals and financial advisers they often say ‘it’s not the career we thought we’d have but we love doing it’.

“As a profession we must do more to attract a diverse pool of talent and help point those thinking of a career in the sector in the right direction.

“It is positive to see there is a real range of experience in the sector and that it is one people are not afraid to take up in later life.

“Apprenticeship schemes, such as our own Aspire programme, are fantastic opportunities for individuals wanting to start a career in financial services and they also help to ensure a diverse pool of talent.

“The City is often accused of nepotism and still being an ‘old boys club’, so it’s very positive to see less than one in 10 insurance and personal finance professionals entered the sector due to a family connection. These old school connotations associated with the professions can be detrimental and it’s a really encouraging statistic that shows the growth of the sectors.”

In numbers: Route to industry (Source: CII)

Votes: Insurance: 1565, FS: 384, Total: 1949

Straight after education: 47% (743), 40% (152), 46% (895)

Via family connection: 9% (146), 8% (30), 9% (176)

Career change: 35% (544), 47% (182), 37% (726)

Apprenticeship/trainee scheme: 8% (132), 5% (20), 8% (152)

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