It’s always tough to write a wrap-up of a show the scale of RIMS (Risk & Insurance Management Society). There’s so much to see and do that one person can’t possibly encapsulate the entire RIMS experience in a mere blog post. So I won’t try. I will, however, point out an interesting trend I’ve seen.

Perhaps it’s just the first time I’m noticing it, but there was a clear attempt to attract new talent and retain veteran knowledge at this conference. I spoke with John Yust, business development specialist for, whose company seeks to place college graduates in insurance and risk management positions. They link the newly minted workforce with entry-level jobs, jobs that to this point have been difficult to find for many graduates.

The flip side of the equation is the trend toward keeping the experience and knowledge that career insurance professionals have. Dr. Sharon Emek, CEO and president of WAHVE (Work At Home Vintage Employees), gave an exceptional presentation entitled “Risk Management Outsourcing Opportunities: Enhance Your Job or Risk Losing It.” Emek, along with Harrah’s Entertainment’s VP of risk management and insurance, Diane Askwyth, Nancy Kelly, practice leader of Human Capital at Hanover Stone Partners, and  Kristina Narvaez, president and CEO of ERM Strategies, outlined ways in which companies and retiring insurance professionals can complement each other through a unique outsourcing opportunity. (Full disclosure: Sharon Emek is a client of Aartrijk, an insurance marketing firm of which I am an associate.)

There were also a number of colleges in attendance. St. John’s University had a booth, and Larry Pistell, senior associate director for the Center for Professional Education, told me he’d brought along a number of students to the show. It was their chance to meet industry folks and gain some understanding of the supporting industries, as well as search for their first post-college position.

It’s great to see the industry coupling with potential employees at both ends of the career spectrum. While it’s true that the industry is in dire need of young talent, the experienced employee is an invaluable resource, and one that can be utilized not just to handle back-office work, but to train and mentor new employees.

What has your company done to attract new talent?

How do you harness the knowledge and skills of those retiring from your company?

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