In an exclusive interview with our sister publication Claims Journal, Dhara Patel, president of the P&C Division at American Claims Management, offers insight into the untapped market of working mothers in recruiting new employees.

Earlier this year, the Insurance Information Institute reported that women made up about 61 percent of the insurance industry workforce between 2006 to 2015, according to statistics provided by the Current Population Survey, a survey conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics of private sector businesses.

While the number of women working in the insurance industry is increasing, Patel said she still considers it to be a male-dominated industry. Patel offered her insights on hiring while at the International Association of Claim Professionals’ annual conference held in Sonoma, Calif., in September.

Recruiting is a challenge across the industry, she said. While insurers are focused on recruiting college graduates, Patel said they may want to turn their attention to working mothers returning to the workforce. Because of gaps in employment, they may be passed over during the resume review process. She offered an example where several adjusters needed to be hired quickly. Because there was little time to sift through dozens of resumes, she turned her attention to several women returning to the workforce.

“They have turned out to be some of my best adjusters. They are the most focused and most committed employees that we have because they are working moms,” explained Patel. “They come to work, [and] they’re not interested in office gossip; they’re not interested in politics. They’re interested in doing their job extremely well and going home. They’re extremely efficient.”