Employee Resource Groups

Collaboration driving commitment to diversity

Spotlight on ERGs

Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) have proven to be pivotal sites of mobilising professionals from across the sector that seek to foster diverse, inclusive workplaces. They are points of immense collaboration that act to overcome silos, both inside and across organisations.

The London Insurance Life campaign (@LIL), The Gender Inclusion Network for Insurance (GIN) and The Insurance Cultural Awareness Network (iCAN) are just three examples of impressive collaboration, with other key ERGs listed below. Whilst respectively they tackle issues including attracting and retaining the best talent, improving gender balance and promoting multicultural inclusion, through collaborating with one another and sharing best practice, they work collectively to advance diversity and inclusion across the sector.


The Insurance Cultural Awareness Network (iCAN)

The Insurance Cultural Awareness Network (iCAN) officially launched in May 2017 as the first industry-wide insurance network in the UK to promote multicultural inclusion and accelerate progression.

iCAN creates an opportunity for colleagues across the industry to initiate partnerships with existing employee resource groups (ERGs), whether they have access within their own firms or not. It provides a platform to highlight the importance of multicultural inclusion and promotes concepts of intersectionality and commonality, crucial elements of successful inclusion for any business.

From a multicultural perspective, iCAN targets three key challenges facing the insurance sector:

  • Leaders - There are few leaders from culturally diverse backgrounds represented within the industry. Given the global nature of the business and diversity of our client base, it is important for organisations to recognise the importance of being able to reflect the diversity of their clients amongst their own talent. With ever greater globalisation, there is a significant opportunity for the industry to achieve greater productivity and performance through a more inclusive and diverse workforce;
  • Industry Networks - Within the insurance community of carriers, brokers, MGA’s and service providers there are currently only a handful of multicultural specific ERGs. These are not connected and operate primarily in their own firms, with little or no outside ability to influence change, nor access to shared resources and networking opportunities;
  • Role Models in the pipeline - The need for visible multicultural role models, at all levels from the industry will be critical to achieving change, particularly when considering the insurance sector’s difficulties in attracting and retaining talented employees from multicultural backgrounds.

The iCAN mentoring programme launches in 2018, with the aim of creating positive change for participants and their organisations and showcasing the breadth of multicultural talent in the industry.


The Gender Inclusion Network for Insurance (GIN) was formed in 2015 to leverage diversity and inclusion and drive cultural change both within their respective organisations and across insurance.

In 2017 GIN expanded its network and its committee to include men and women who want to take positive action to improve gender balance within the industry. It advances its mission by working collaboratively with other diversity networks such as The Insurance Cultural Awareness Network (iCAN), The LGBT Insurance Network (LINK) and The Insurance Supper Club (ISC) to share best practice, increase relationships and challenge the status quo.

2017 Highlights

  • #Diversity2.0 – Aon and AIG’s Women and LGBT networks partnered on an inspiring event, called ‘Diversity Evolution 2.0’ that focused on the key steps to improve diversity in the recruitment, promotion and retention of diverse talent within financial services.
  • #BuildYourBrand – XL Caitlin hosted the key GIN event of 2017, partnering with Vanessa Vallely, Founder of WeAreTheCity, and SmartWorks, LinkedIn, House of Colour and Hays to support men and women from across the insurance industry in building their personal brand.

ERGs across the sector