Spring Spotlight: Aadil Ikram

We hope these behind-the-scenes employee spotlights give you a better idea of who we are, what we do and what it’s like to work at Spring. Next up we have Aadil: part bartender, part chef and part consultant-in-the-making.

Title: Consulting AnalystSpring Consulting Analyst

Joined Spring in: December of 2015

At work: At Spring, Aadil takes on project management responsibilities and is particularly focused on captive feasibility studies, disability management outsourcing and data analytics. He is also charged with the extremely important initiative of the Friday happy hour drink cart 🙂

Outside-of-work: When not working on client projects and presentations, Aadil loves playing with his dog, Nemo, and golfing when the weather’s nice. He also enjoys cooking and he’s not half-bad; we’ve been lucky enough to try some of his specialty dishes here at the office!

Favorite season: “I like the fall best, because where I come from (Pakistan) it’s only one season throughout the whole year. So experiencing the change in season from summer to fall and watching the leaves change color is really beautiful, in my opinion.”

Favorite flower: “Lilies – don’t ask me why though.” Okay, we won’t.

Favorite food: Aadil’s a big fan of Japanese food, especially traditional sushi. However he’s very adamant about not having avocados in his sushi.

Favorite part about working at Spring: Aadil loves the people at Spring and the teams he gets to work with. He also notes that, “Everyone is very collaborative. The culture is inclusive and everyone’s voice is heard.”

What’s the best vacation you’ve ever taken and why? “My senior year of college, a group of about 35 of us when to the Dominican Republic for spring break. It was the last trip we all took together and it was a perfect, bittersweet closing to my college days.” He’s been adulting ever since.

Spring Spotlight: Michelle Chivian

What is it we do over here? Consulting, actuarial services, health insurance – that’s all well and good, but who are we? We’re looking to clear things up and put some faces to our name, especially since we’ve been blooming with new team members lately. Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at the Spring team. Next up is Michelle.

Spring Consulting Group CareersTitle: Executive Assistant

Joined Spring in: December of 2014

At work: Michelle is pretty much Karin Landry’s (Spring’s Managing Partner) right-hand person. While she is dedicated to making sure all runs smoothly in Karin’s crazy busy work life, Michelle has also embraced the opportunity to help the entire company. She takes on certain office managerial responsibilities (i.e. we have her to thank for our monthly birthday lunches and birthday celebrations!) and enjoys being here to assist in whatever might come up.

Outside-of-work: When not here coordinating a myriad of logistics, Michelle loves to cook and travel. She and her husband have a passion for wine, having both worked in the industry, and enjoy going out for wine dinners as well as staying in with a home-cooked meal. Wine and food: the perfect pairing. Michelle is also quite the jet-setter – she’s heading to Paris this summer and heads out to Napa Valley about once a year!

Favorite season: “People might hate me for saying this, but I love winter! I love the snow and the freshness of the air. I like taking walks on the beach with no one else there – not to mention my birthday’s in the winter too!” Well, Boston is a great place for winter-lovers (they do exist).

Favorite flower: “I love hydrangeas – especially antique hydrangeas which are super colorful and blossom in the fall.”

Favorite food: Michelle comes from a big Italian family, so it’s no surprise that her favorite food genre is Italian. While she likes going out to eat, she actually prefers her own cooking, and especially loves her homemade meat sauce.

Favorite part about working at Spring: “The uncertainty of what each day will bring – in a good way. Every day is a new challenge and that’s fun and exciting to me.” Michelle loves working with Karin, who she notes is both kind and funny. Overall, Michelle likes that she is always busy and enjoys being able to help.

If you weren’t here at Spring doing a wonderful job, what would you be doing? “I would probably be doing volunteer work with Dana-Farber, at the children’s hospital. It’s an amazing organization and ultimately how I’d want to spend my time. Oh, and traveling the world too, of course!”

Spring to Present at VCIA Annual Conference

Captive InsuranceThe Vermont Captive Insurance Association (VCIA), established in 1985, is the world’s largest trade association for captive insurance. In addition to various networking and educational opportunities throughout the year, the VCIA also brings together over 1000 global captive experts and professionals once a year at their annual conference in Burlington, Vermont. Spring, an active member of the organization for over a decade, is proud to be sponsoring and presenting at this year’s conference, which will take place from August 8th to 10th.

Among the event’s impressive and educational lineup of speakers will be our very own Partner, Teri Weber. Teri’s presentation, “Cyber Security and Captives (Part 2): How to Stay One Step Ahead“, will take place on Wednesday, August 9th from 3-4 PM and will focus on some of Spring’s recent survey results regarding the integration Cyber Insuranceof cyber and captive insurance. Teri will discuss current benchmarks and trends related to the funding of cyber insurance through captives and give advice for those who may be considering this approach. If you’re a captive expert with cyber security concerns (doesn’t everyone have those nowadays?), you’ll want to join us for this session.

The conference will also address issues like:

  • Captive governance best practices
  • Tax updates
  • Health care benefits captives
  • Maximizing your captive
  • & more

But we’re not just speaking at the VCIA Annual Conference, we’re sponsoring too! So please be sure to stop by booth #2 and pick our team’s brains on all things captive insurance. Until then, you might be interested in our recent white paper: Funding Medical Stop-Loss Insurance in Captives: What You Need to Know.

Spring to Present at DMEC Annual Conference

ADisability Managements the DMEC (Disability Management Employer Coalition) celebrates its 25 anniversary, Spring is celebrating its 9th year in a row attending the DMEC Annual Conference. This year’s event will be held from July 31st to August 3rd in Anaheim, California and will bring together over 700 professionals in the employee absence and disability management fields. As a regular DMEC sponsor, Spring is thrilled to continue its involvement in and support of the organization – one of our Partners, Karen English, is on the DMEC Executive Advisory Board and another Partner, Teri Weber, will be presenting at this year’s annual conference.

Teri will be joining the Vice President of Benefits and the FMLA/Disability Manager – both of Memorial Sloan Kettering – in a presentation entitled “Accommodation…It’s Not Just Return to Work.” The ADA Compliance discussion, which will take place from 8:30-9:30 AM on Thursday, August 3rd, will focus on innovative employer trends when it comes to the ADA. Teri will explain how to go above and beyond mere compliance (and why you should) and institute a more comprehensive, proactive disability model involving additional stakeholders. If your company is looking to be a thought leader in this realm, be sure to join!

Other topics addressed at the conference include:

  • Mental health at work
  • Paid parental leave (especially during Trump’s presidency)
  • Employee productivity & retention
  • Workplace violence
  • Vocational rehabilitation
  • Informal care-giving
  • Handling complicated FMLA requests
  • Drug abuse in the workplace
  • Alzheimer’s Disease
  • Mobile approaches to compliance
  • Early disability intervention
  • & more!

If you’re lucky enough to be able to attend the 2017 DMEC Annual Conference, you’ll hear from speakers from companies like GlaxoSmithKline, American Electric Power, T-Mobile, Starwood Hotels and Nike, among many others. Additionally, Spring is a proud event sponsor, so be sure to stop by booth 314 and say hello to our team in between networking receptions and MLB baseball games!

In the meantime, you might be interested in reading our white paper: Managing an Absent Workforce: A Guide to the Family Medical Leave Act.

Spring at the DMEC Compliance Conference

In an industry with regulations that are constantly changing, it’s important for professionals in the Benefits and Absence Management fields to come together and make sure everyone is up to speed. As such, we were happy to be able to attend the DMEC (Disability Management Employer Coalition) FMLA/ADA Employer Compliance conference in Minneapolis earlier this month. Spring has a long-standing relationship with the 25-year old DMEC, having presented at and sponsored many of their annual events since 2008. One of our partners, Karen English, sits on the DMEC Executive Advisory Board and as such was excited to be able to make it to Minneapolis for the event.

Topics addressed at this year’s compliance conference included increasing FMLA access to paid family and sick leave, the importance of documentation, how to make sure employees are also aware and adhering to the FMLA, how to go above and beyond the ADA instead of doing only what’s required, how to deal with intermittent leaves, how to impact or reduce leave and various other issues.

The Spring team will also be attending and sponsoring DMEC’s Annual Conference in Anaheim, CA from July 31st to August 3rd. If you’ll be there too, be sure to stop by booth #314 and say hello!

Spring to Sponsor NEEBC’s Annual Employee Benefits Summit

Spring is excited to be sponsoring the New England Employee Benefits Council (NEEBC) annual summit and trade show again this year. NEEBC, with over 1,350 members to date, has been bringing together HR and Benefits professionals from the New England area since 1979 – providing ample educational sessions and networking events so that everyone can learn and grow from one another. Spring has been a proud partner of NEEBC for about ten years, staying actively involved with events and programs. As one of our partners, Teri Weber, sits on the NEEBC board as Vice President of Programs, we have enjoyed a close relationship with the organization for many years and are happy to be sponsoring their upcoming conference.Employee Benefits New England

This year’s Annual Employee Benefits Summit and Trade Show, themed “Riding the Winds of Change: Strategies for Success” will take place on Wednesday, May 24th at the Newton Marriott. Several Spring team members will be in attendance to support the organization, take advantage of its informational sessions, and meet with both familiar and new faces within the industry. Speakers will include the Managing Director of Tuckson Health Connections, the VP of Total Rewards at BJ’S Wholesale Club, a Health Economist from Harvard Medical School and several others. Sessions will cover a range of topics like behavioral health financial wellness.

If you’ll be joining us and other industry professionals at this year’s NEEBC Summit, please be sure to to stop and chat with a Spring team member – we’d love to meet you!

 

 

 

 

Spring to Sponsor the NHDS Annual Meeting

Spring’s brokerage arm, Spring Insurance Group, will be exhibiting at the New Hampshire Dental Society’s annual meeting in Meredith, NH from May 18th to the 20th. This is a two and a half day conference that brings together dental professionals and industry experts to network and learn from each other. As the official employee benefits partner of the NHDS, Spring has enjoyed attending for the past few years and is excited to participate again.  insurance for medical practices

Attendees will  hear from leaders, educators and authors of the oral health industry as well as experts in IT, business development and more. Topics at this year’s conference will include:

  • Treatment planning & delivering complex, multidisciplinary cases
  • Advanced hygiene therapy
  • Invisalign – misconceptions, identifying candidates, etc.
  • How to finance your practice while reducing costs
  • Improving oral health in rural areas
  • HIPAA & security for dental practices
  • Integrating oral health into primary care training
  • Risk management for dental businesses

Spring Insurance Group has a longstanding relationship with various dental practices and associations, as we offer multiple products and solutions that allow small to medium-sized medical practices provide cost-effective insurance and benefits for their employees. We look forward to meeting new faces and hearing the latest updates within the field at NHDS later this month. If you’ll be attending, be sure to stop by booth 33 and chat with our team!

5 Key Risk Management Themes from the RIMS Annual Conference

5 Key Risk Management Themes from the RIMS Annual Conference

Our team was excited to head back to The Risk Management Society’s (RIMS) annual conference for the 10th year in a row last week, and we certainly weren’t disappointed. The three-day conference, which took place in Philadelphia this year, is one of our top events for keeping our pulse on the industry and meeting both new and familiar faces within the risk management field.  Risk Management

We sent a team of our consultants to the RIMS conference and asked them to report back on hot topics and trends. As it turns out, there were a few undeniable themes that sprung up at the event. They were so prominent that they shone through even despite the many networking receptions, inspirational keynote speakers like Michael J. Fox, charitable causes such as Alex’s Lemonade Stand for childhood cancer research, and a Wellness Zenter – all of which could be found at RIMS.

 

If you work in risk management and were unable to attend the conference or could simply use a refresher, you’ll want to know about these themes we uncovered:

  1. Technology

In this day and age, it’d be odd if technology wasn’t a focus at the conference, but we noticed it highlighted in three different but related regards:

  1. The Internet of Things:

Presenters from Intel, NCR Corporation and other companies explained how the Internet of Things (IoT) is changing things in both good and bad ways. Security, privacy and chain of liability were cited as growing risks thanks to IoT, while automation, “smart manufacturing” and telehealthcare were pointed out to be opportunities for efficiency.

     b. Social Media:Risk Insurance

Sessions led by professionals from Oracle, Zurich and Social Detection, Inc. spoke about risk as it pertains to social media. Speakers cautioned against computer viruses, lack of anonymity, poor public relations, employee behavior online and reputational risk when it comes to social media. They encouraged attendees not to ignore these digital platforms, but instead provided tips on how to build a solid management framework for social media risk.

    c. Wearables:

Wearable devices, such as FitBit or Apple Watch, were among the tech discussions. Specifically, risk professionals at Under Armour and UPS explained how to leverage wearables to increase safety, gather data and improve health while accounting for HIPAA and other legal implications.

 

  1. All Things Cyber

While this could be classified under technology, the subject got so much attention at RIMS that we thought it deserved its own category. Cyber obviously presents huge risks with respect to security, whether an attack comes from a stand-alone hacker or a terrorist group. As a group from Liberty Mutual pointed out, the worst cyber-attacks can result in a total system shutdown, and they advised on how environmental insurance ties into the issue.

Cyber Insurance

Risk Management Director of Morgan Stanley, Andrew Weisman, led a presentation on cyber insurance – vetting carriers, knowing limitations and understanding various complicated claims. A separate session focused on a specific ransomware attack and its different ramifications. Lisa Walton of JC Penney was among those who explained considerations for commercial property cyber insurance specifically, while another presentation cautioned against cyber-attacks at a mass-scale and explained why cyber security is not merely an IT problem.

We could go on and on, as the topic of cyber headlined over ten RIMS sessions, but we’ll leave you with just the above glimpse.

 

  1. International/Global Risk Issues

Global Risk ManagementRisk management is difficult enough when merely trying to comply with one nation or region’s regulations. For multinational companies, it gets even trickier. Speakers from Zurich and Corning talked about the need to modernize international program regulation and university professionals discussed how to align your company’s strategy with its ERM and different cultural, political and economic considerations when going global. Additionally, risk management factors and advice within specific geographies such as Canada and Latin America were covered.

 

  1. Data and Analytics

Among presenters who focused on the importance of data in risk management were professionals from The Institutes and Aramark. One session focused on big data and how to utilize it from the descriptive to the prescriptive stages of risk management. Analytics was highlighted in various sessions throughout the other four themes as well – playing a central role in technology and cyber, in particular.

Captive Insurance

  1. Workplace Violence

Last but certainly not least, Ariel Jenkins of Safety National and Mario Pecoraro of Alliance Worldwide Investigative Group covered violence in the workplace – how to prevent it, how to anticipate it and how to manage post-incident. They and other speakers noted that there can be many sparks to workplace violence such as mental health issues and racism, and highlighted warning signs as well as lessons learned from real-life attacks.

 

Needless to say there was a lot there was a lot to take in at the annual RIMS conference! We were also impressed with the number of industry-specific sessions at the event, including those aimed at the financial services, utilities, construction, entertainment, restaurant and casino markets.

If you attended RIMS or work in risk management, you might also be interested in our white paper: Risk Managers Guide to Funding Employee Benefits in a Captive.