How Does Bilingualism Impact the Insurance Industry Diversity and Inclusion?

November 23, 2023 in

Bilingualism in the USA is often a job requirement for industries that work with clients. But, how does bilingualism impact the insurance industry diversity and inclusion?

Bilingualism and multilingualism in the insurance industry sector in the USA are always a priority, as they assist in promoting diversity and inclusion. At the same time, they make insurance services more accessible to a wider target group.

If you speak more than one language and see yourself working in the insurance sector, you will fit perfectly at Afni. Initially, you must understand how you can contribute to transforming and uplifting the industry.

How Does Bilingualism Impact the Insurance Industry Diversity and Inclusion
Source: / Photo Contributor: Studio Romantic

How Does Bilingualism Impact the Insurance Industry Diversity and Inclusion

The insurance world has seen drastic changes once it recognized the need for diverse and inclusive teams. Hiring bilingual employees is one of the biggest contributors to creating better economic and social outcomes in the industry.

Understanding how does bilingualism impact the insurance industry diversity and inclusion, many insurance companies have developed specialized programs for the matter. Also, insurance careers for bilingual people are on the rise.

Employees with language skills other than English are highly valued in all industries. In a survey published by ACTFL, 90% of all companies stated they relied on bilingual employees. More specifically, the three departments where foreign language skills are needed are:

  • Customer service
  • Sales
  • Marketing

Bilingualism impacts the insurance industry's diversity and inclusion by:

  • Acting as a catalyst for diversity and inclusion
  • Improving communications and customer relations
  • Contributing to an inclusive workforce and employee engagement
  • Using language skills as a competitive advantage
  • Applying inclusive policies and practices

The business case for diversity

According to the Census Bureau, the population in the U.S. is getting more racially and ethnically diverse every year. So, endorsing diversity in the workforce allows better insurance access to different racial and ethnic groups in the USA.

The demographic changes are not equal in all states. The U.S. Census Bureau has published 10 states with the highest diversity index in 2020, which are:

  • Hawaii
  • California
  • Nevada
  • Maryland
  • District of Columbia
  • Texas
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Georgia
  • Florida

Hence, considering the demographic situation in the area where the insurance company operates is key. The hiring of bilingual employees should be done according to the community's needs.

Bilingualism as a Catalyst for Diversity and Inclusion

The connection between bilingual skills and inclusivity in the insurance sector can be made on two levels. First, bilingualism enhances cultural competency. Bilingualism helps insurance professionals communicate effectively with clients while understanding their cultural nuances.

On the other hand, companies like ours attract diverse talent and build a culture that relies on diversity and inclusivity. We promote a culturally sensitive approach in the insurance industry.

Improved communication and customer relations

Bilingual employees can communicate effectively with a wider range of clients. Many individuals in multicultural societies prefer to seek insurance companies that have employees speaking the client’s native language.

Hence, bilingual insurance specialists bridge insurance companies and potential clients who don’t speak English fluently. The insurance services are more accessible and understandable for diverse communities. Also, the trust of the clients with diverse customer bases grows.

Also, bilingual employees are highly valued in inclusive companies for international cooperation. You can help companies have better relations with companies from other countries.

Improved Communication and Customer Relations
Source: / Photo Contributor: Pormezz

Inclusive workforce and employee engagement

Another way how does bilingualism impact the insurance industry's diversity and inclusion is by fostering a multilingual work environment. A cohesive environment might result in better employee satisfaction.

Working in a company where your efforts are recognized instead of being discriminated against because of your linguistic background can motivate you to advance in your career. Picking the right company, like us at Afni, gives you excellent career advancement opportunities if you are a bilingual employee.

Language skills as a competitive advantage

With your second language proficiency, you can gain an edge in the competitive insurance industry. Companies in the Making Languages Our Business survey stated they notice foreign language skills shortages in different departments.

The three most requested second languages for both domestic and international needs of the insurance companies are:

  • Spanish
  • Chinese
  • French
  • German
  • Japanese
  • Arabic

Inclusive policies and practices

One of the most popular green flags for companies nowadays is the implementation of inclusive hiring strategies. That is both beneficial for the job seekers, but also for us as a company.

Firstly, you, as a job seeker who speaks more than one language or has a different cultural background than the majority in your city, will be welcome to work at Afni. We promote multiculturalism and multilingualism in our workspace.

You will be working in an environment that is stereotype and prejudice-free. Besides, you will be a valued asset to the company.

As for us, we will be seen in our potential client's eyes as a company that prioritizes quality and performance while embracing the differences. Having inclusive training and development programs ensures that the strengths of the workers are recognized and used to improve the insurance industry. Still, we dedicate time to turning their weaknesses into their strengths.

Measuring the Impact of Bilingualism on Diversity and Inclusion

How does bilingualism impact the insurance industry diversity and inclusion can be measured from different perspectives. At Afni, we start by clearly defining and identifying the specific metrics we will use in our data-driven approaches. We mostly focus on language proficiency, representation of bilingual employees, and building company policies for inclusivity.

One of the most valuable measurements is the opinion of our employees. We gather information by surveying and interviewing our employees. We ask them to share their experiences with bilingualism in the workplace.

Paying attention to employee performance is also a must. Evaluating the performance of both bilingual and monolingual employees is important. We focus on assessing the effectiveness of engaging with a diverse clientele and its impact on business growth.

Regarding business growth, hiring bilingual employees reflects a multicultural client base and brings a variety of perspectives and ideas. In our experience, bilingual employees are one of the ways to foster innovation and creativity in the insurance sector.

How language skills affect diversity and inclusion in the insurance sector can be measured with client base analysis. In the insurance company's annual reports, a separate section can be added for analyzing the client's background.

Challenges and Solutions

Overcoming language barriers is hard if you don’t have the right people. In the insurance sector, one of the biggest challenges is translating complex policies and jargon to the clients.

Luckily, these types of language barriers can be easily overcome with specialized training programs. They will provide in-depth knowledge about the insurance terms in your second language.

Additionally, nurturing inclusivity in multilingual teams and addressing bias and stereotypes requires constant work. Both companies and employees must be open to collaborating and working together to make the environment more diverse and inclusive.

Lastly, finding an insurance agent that speaks the desired client’s language is not easy. Thus, the California Department of Insurance recognized this problem and developed a tool to find a bilingual broker or agent. This tool not only helps people looking for insurance services but also increases the companies' visibility.

Legal and Ethical Considerations

When looking for a job in the insurance industry, you should pay attention to the legal and ethical considerations. Firstly, you must ensure the employer works according to the laws of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The EEOC enforces federal laws in which discrimination against job applicants or employees is illegal.

The Equal Opportunity Laws in the USA apply to every situation in the workplace, starting with the hiring process. More specifically, it is illegal to be discriminated against because of your ethnicity, sexuality, sex, or other genetic information in work situations such as:

  • Firing
  • Promotions
  • Harassment
  • Training
  • Wages
  • Benefits
Legal and Ethical Considerations
Source: / Photo Contributor: thodonal88

Contribute To Diversity and Inclusion in Insurance with Afni

With Afni careers, you can be the missing piece of the multicultural puzzle in the insurance industry. Now that you understand how does bilingualism impact the insurance industry diversity and inclusion, you are prepared to take the next step. That is finding your new job with Afni.

Being part of the Afni family means you get to enjoy many benefits. Although you must experience the perks firsthand to believe it, we offer competitive pay, bonuses, paid time off, tuition reimbursement, referral bonuses, and on-site fun events.

As our employee, you will have the opportunity to learn and grow with us. We have different level positions in the insurance industry, from beginner to management roles. Check out our open positions and apply now!

About the Author

is the Recruitment Marketing Manager for Afni and brings a wealth of knowledge and tips for job seekers. She holds a bachelor's degree in public relations and marketing from Mount Saint Vincent University as well as a masters degree in digital marketing and advertising from Liberty University.