Editorial Board   

Ms. Sarmiento

Fran Sarmiento

Executive Vice President, Venture Insurance Programs

Fran Sarmiento is the Executive Vice President of Programs for Venture Insurance Programs, a national program administrator for select industries, including the hotel and resort industry. At Venture, Ms. Sarmiento manages more than $75 million of insurance premiums and is responsible for overseeing the underwriting, development and expansion of all programs. An outspoken proponent of providing insurance coverage that is specifically tailored to meet the needs of the ever-changing hospitality industry, Ms. Sarmiento's 30 years of commercial insurance experience includes positions with Liberty Mutual Insurance Company and CIGNA Insurance. She has spent the last 10 years focused on industry specific insurance programs, with one of her main areas of emphasis being the hotel and resort industry. Ms. Sarmiento maintains an active involvement in several community service and insurance industry organizations. Most recently she served on the Board of Directors of the Target Markets Program Administrator Association. Ms. Sarmiento attended the University Of Pennsylvania and has earned numerous insurance designations including the Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriting (CPCU), the most prestigious insurance designation, and her Associate in Risk Management (ARM). She is married and has three children.

Ms. Sarmiento can be contacted at 800-282-6247 or fsarmiento@ventureprograms.com

Coming up in March 2020...

Human Resources: Confronting a Labor Shortage

With the unemployment rate at its lowest level in decades (3.7%), what has always been a perennial problem for human resource professionals - labor shortage - is now reaching acute levels of concern. It is getting harder to find and recruit qualified applicants. Even finding candidates with the skills to succeed in entry-level positions has become an issue. In addition, employee turnover rates remain extremely high in the hotel industry. As a result of these problems, hotel HR managers are having to rethink their recruitment strategies in order to hire the right talent for the right job. First, hotels have been forced to raise their wages and offer other appealing perks, as a way to attract qualified candidates. Secondly, HR managers are reassessing their interviewing techniques, focusing less on the answers they receive to questions and more on observable behavior. Part of this process includes role-playing during the interview, so that the recruiter can gauge how a candidate works through specific problems and interacts with other team members. Additionally, some HR managers are also creating internal talent pools as a way to address labor shortages. Instead of utilizing department resources to find new hires with specific skills for needed positions, hotels are cultivating talent pools internally and preparing their employees to assume leadership roles whenever the time comes. They are also placing greater emphasis on a company culture that is more performance-based, as a way to curb employee turnover, increase employee satisfaction, and assure higher levels of customer service. Finally, recognizing the importance of employee retention as a way to lessen the impact of a tight labor market, some HR managers are instituting generous reward programs in order to retain their top performers. The March Hotel Business Review will explore what some HR professionals are doing to address these and other issues in their departments.