Employee Profile: Lauren Hassell
Lauren Hassell, Quality Assurance Team Lead at Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Group in Warren, New Jersey has worked in the insurance industry for over 30 years. Many of these years were spent working for large, household name insurers; specializing in information technology.
Lauren joined MSIG nearly 5 years ago, and seen her fair share of employers who say all the right things about valuing teamwork and championing diversity and inclusion in their hiring practices, it wasn’t until Lauren began working for MSIG that she really started to appreciate the value of teamwork, diversity and camaraderie. Lauren sees examples of these important traits in her daily interactions with colleagues and coworkers.
Bringing quality to quality assurance
Quality assurance as a profession is a broad field. Found in a variety of overarching industries beyond insurance services and insurance products, quality assurance specialists are responsible for assuring that assets or deliverables work as they’re intended to — before they reach the end user. Those users can be customers or employees.
What brought Lauren to MSIG was the quality assurance testing of a software project that was new to MSIG at the time. MSIG was looking to customize the product to the needs of its employees, and quality assurance was part of that implementation process.
“You have your developers who go out and develop software,” Lauren explained. “Once they’re finished, it’s up to the QA team to flesh out the product. Our job is to catch any bugs in the software. So our focus is to ensure that it doesn’t have any issues before it gets to users.”
Several different departments at MSIG use the system that Lauren and her team tested when the project was going on. They did so through a combination of negative and positive testing, which relies on data entry to see how the software will respond to those entries.
“[The software] makes the claims adjusters’ lives much easier,” Lauren said. “The front end part of the system makes it easier for the adjusters to work off of and provide the information on the claims to the insured. So it has benefits both internally and externally.”
Welcoming, helpful environment
In a roundabout way, the ease and simplicity of the customized software are a microcosm of the work environment at MSIG. Just as the software makes everybody’s job easier, coworkers are constantly looking to improve processes in their willingness to help one another.
“MSIG is a very tight-knit group, especially in IT,” Lauren said. “When you’re in a small unit, you get to know the employees, who are all so willing to help you out. Even if it’s to top management, you can get the answers you need. Everyone has their roles, and when you reach out for assistance, that assistance is going to be there. This makes it easier to get things accomplished.”
Even outside of IT, Lauren added, the people at MSIG are eager to be a part of the solution.
“‘I’m not going to help you out because it’s not my job’ is never what you’re going to hear [from someone] within MSIG,” she said. “And if they can’t help, they’ll find someone who will,” Lauren said. “You don’t have people turning their back on you when you’re asking questions.”
Champion of diversity
Another rewarding aspect of working at MSIG for Lauren is the company’s focus on diversity and inclusion. MSIG is committed to fostering a workplace that encourages all employees to reach their fullest potential. That strength lies in diversity, which includes embracing different viewpoints and perspectives. Lauren says she’s observed MSIG’s commitment to diversity in action.
“You always want to be in a company where there’s great communication,” Lauren explained, when asked why people should consider applying to MSIG. “You want a company that’s diverse, and this company is diverse in their hiring practices.”
Lauren added that the best example of how MSIG champions diversity is in terms of how upper management treats its employees. No one is treated like they’re an underling.
“They respect opinions and they listen,” Lauren said. “If you need to bring an issue to them, they’re going to listen to you.”
In short, what MSIG really cares about is its people. As a long-time professional within the insurance industry, Lauren noted many insurers come up short in this area. As a result, turnover rates tend to be high — people often leave companies very quickly. This is not the case at MSIG!
“The focus [with other insurers] is not on the employees but getting the job done — regardless of who does it,” she said. “But with MSIG, there’s a lot more communication and working with another to get the job done.”
Lauren looks forward to getting the job done with her colleagues at MSIG for many years to come.
To learn more about working for MSIG, check out our careers page.