Archive for the ‘Company News’ Category

Hays Companies of Wisconsin Named One of the Top Workplaces

For the fifth straight year, Hays Companies of Wisconsin has been named as one of southeastern Wisconsin’s Top Workplaces by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

The Journal Sentinel invited over 1300 companies to participate in this survey. Each participant’s employees were polled on their overall job satisfaction in a myriad of areas. Each company is then ranked based upon their responses and individual comments. Here are just a few of the comments that helped Hays Companies of Wisconsin earn this status in 2015:

“It offers me the opportunity to help people learn in a positive, professional environment.”

“Our principals do really care about each employee as a person first. I feel that we all succeed because the environment fosters team work.”

At Hays Companies, we’ve created a synergy between teams that’s unmatched in the industry. Our employees thrive within the innovative environment that our founding partners helped to cultivate, providing a rich and meaningful workplace that ultimately best benefits our clients.

Hays Companies is one of the fastest growing property & casualty and employee benefits advisors in the country. As a privately held company owned by its managing employees, there are no outside interests or agendas to distract our employees from the business of insurance and risk management.  We focus exclusively on meeting the goals established by our clients. Hays Companies is built to be flexible and we collaborate with clients to find business efficient solutions that can be improved upon incrementally over time.  Our 700+ team represents a dynamic, entrepreneurial assembly of the best and brightest in the industry.

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Cyber Attacks. What Do They Damage Most: Revenue or Reputation?

Cyber attacks are a serious global problem. The number of successful attacks has risen drastically to an average of 138 per week.*  The constant national media coverage of high profile data breaches has brought cyber insurance into the spotlight. Companies hacked have the arduous task of rebuilding consumer loyalty, trust and revenue.

In this issue of FOCUS, we tackle the question of how companies can protect themselves against this new age of brand terrorism to stave off a cyber attack or lessen its impact.  We also explore how the government is attacking cyber and why the underwriting cycle might be different this time based upon market performance and trends.

Click here to view FOCUS. You may also view as an e-magazine.

To request a hard copy, please email

* Survey by the Ponemon Institute

Client Stories: Christensen Farms

At Hays Companies, we know the risks and concerns facing companies in the food and agribusiness industries. Something such as an E. coli contamination incident and subsequent product recall can leave your company reeling and scrambling to save your reputation. Our expert team at Hays is here to provide the assistance you need to stay on top of your industry.  Watch how we act as an extension of your risk management team in our client story:






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Hays Companies Opens New York City Office

Hays Companies, one of the nation’s fastest growing risk management, insurance and employee benefits advisors in the country, recently opened an office in New York, New York. This new location will allow Hays Companies to better serve existing clients and future partners in the Northeastern United States.

“Hays Companies strong, steady growth and our expanding national footprint is a real tribute to the talent of our people,” says Jim Hays, CEO of Hays Companies. “Our consultants have an exceptional ability to work with clients to generate great value.”

The New York City office is a natural extension of Hays Companies Northeast office system, which includes offices in Jericho, NY, Boston, MA, Nashua, NH, Morristown, NJ and Philadelphia, PA. “New York offers a strong platform for developing deeper relationships with a host of current and prospective clients throughout the Northeast. We’re excited to have a greater presence in this large and growing market and look forward to serving a range of new clients,” said Mike Egan, President of Hays Companies.

Hays Companies has been providing risk management services for over twenty years. The company was founded in 1994 through the entrepreneurial spirit of Jim C. Hays and five senior level individuals from major insurance brokerage firms. They were determined to fill the void of customer service and creative new ideas in the marketplace. Today their vision remains alive and well. Hays Companies has grown to become a nationally recognized insurance broker with over 700+ insurance professionals located in 35 offices. In addition, Hays Companies currently ranks as the 18th largest insurance brokerage in the country (as ranked by Crain’s Business Insurance).

For more information contact Andrea Field (

Hollcroft Named Safety Professional of the Year

The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) recently honored Hays team member Bruce Hollcroft with the Region I Safety Professional of the Year Award. The prestigious award for the West Region was based upon technical expertise, innovations to advance the safety profession, community involvement and endorsements from within the safety community.

ASSE represents the largest professional safety organization in the world with nearly 40,000 members worldwide. Congratulations Bruce on your significant impact on the safety profession!

An Educational Seminar on Drones

Join us via webcast on Tuesday, February 3, 2015 at 10:00 AM CT for our seminar on “Drones: The Future is Now.”

In 2012, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act was signed, which included a requirement that the FAA develop regulations for the licensing of commercial drones by September 2015. While licensing is still underway, drones are already being used non-commercially by governmental entities for border surveillance, scientific and university research and public safety, etc.

Why Should You Attend:
The commercial drone market is on the horizon. If commercial drone use is approved; the FAA projects that 30,000 drones could be operational as early as 2020. This is a hot-button topic for the aviation industry, as well as a wide array of businesses seeking advantages of drone technology. The commercial use of drones presents traditional and non-traditional exposures for companies.

Highly-respected, veteran aviation attorney, Donald Chance Mark, Hays Companies Aviation Team, as well as Mark Plummer of Allianz who will provide market insight.

You may register for the complimentary seminar here. Limited seats remain.


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The Hidden Costs of Terrorism.

Terrorism. It could easily be the most alarming word in the English language. In our first issue of FOCUS, we tackle the hidden costs of terrorism and what it takes to manage the risk today.  We also showcase our new analytical resource that provides valauble information on market performance and trends.

Read more here.

To request a hard copy, please email

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Steve Topel Joins Hays Companies

Hays Companies announced Steve Topel has joined its Chicago operations as President of Property and Casualty. He will be responsible for spearheading new business development, overall office leadership, and recruiting great people.

“We are delighted to have Steve on board at Hays. His knowledge and experience will add significant depth to our property and casualty and employee benefits capabilities,” said Jim Hays, CEO of Hays Companies. Topel is known for spurring rapid organic growth and developing talented rising stars in the industry.

Topel joins Hays Companies with extensive leadership experience. He served as the President and Chief Sales Officer of The Horton Group, as well as President and Chief Executive Officer of JMB Insurance for seven years. He has successfully run operations in the Illinois marketplace, along with Indiana, Wisconsin and Tennessee. In addition, Topel is active as a Board Director for The Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers, a premier association for the top commercial insurance and employee benefits intermediaries worldwide. He is also involved on the Board of Directors for the Sinai Health System, working to assist populations who have limited access to healthcare.

Topel’s addition to the organization is another example of how Hays Companies is committed to designing a team of the best and brightest who can provide the highest quality products and services to our clients.

Hays Companies is one of the fastest growing, privately-held risk management, insurance and employee benefits advisors in the country. Our philosophy of delivering the highest-quality, customer-focused service has led to significant growth for 20 years. Today the company includes 700+ experienced professionals in more than 35 locations throughout the United States. For more information contact Andrea Trombley (

New Technologies That Support Health Strategies


No matter what form of health strategies an organization offers, there is little chance of success without member engagement, and no chance for member engagement without member awareness. At Hays Companies, we understand while there are many kinds of employer-sponsored wellness programs, all of them present program administrators with the common challenge of effectively communicating to the target population. As anyone who has been involved in employer health initiative knows all too well, it is no simple task to create and sustain a dialogue with a diverse population of employees who may not have much in common in terms of geography, work schedule, or lifestyle choices.

Fortunately, continued advances in technology offer many promising new resources to help employers’ efforts to bring positive changes in the lives of their employees. Many of these new tools take the form of portals, devices, and applications (or apps).

Improvements in portal usability are making wellness programs more accessible than ever to employees and administrators. In just the last few years, wellness vendors have developed new offerings with portals that feature the following:

  • A seamless transition from an employer’s internal homepage to the external program’s portal.
  •  Online registration by employees for events and programs, which automates response tracking and communications.
  • Reporting capabilities regarding engagement indicators and health outcome changes.
  • The ability to sync devices and apps to the assigned wellness portal; allowing for example the secure uploading of exercise data directly to an employee’s personal page.

Innovations in digital health and fitness devices can leverage employee reliance on their phones, tablets and laptops, helping to link the passive activity of using a portable device to active endeavors such as exercise. Taking advantage of these new technologies can help employees to make healthier lifestyle choices and significantly increase positive outcomes. For example, incorporating wearable health-promoting devices such as FitBit, Nike Fuel Band or the Pebble by FitLinx and applications into a wellness program can be a simple and effective way to encourage participation. Many such devices offer new ways to help companies and employees achieve their shared fitness goals.

Downloadable apps can serve as either a complement or an inexpensive alternative to a fitness device. Program administrators can introduce employees to health-promoting apps via the employer wellness portal. Below are six of the most popular options.

Wellness programs that integrate these innovations will serve novice techies as well as tech-savvy staff, because these are technologies most employees already know and use.

All. Together. Simplified.

With the rapidly evolving technology marketplace, Hays Companies has partnered with independent technology consultants to simplify the evaluation, development and implementation process. We can build effective platforms that leverage technology such as portals, devices and apps, as well as care reminders, care access, financial wellbeing, advocacy tools and more. Our goal at Hays Companies is to deliver the best organizational solution for health strategy technology and create efficiencies to enhance the employee’s experience with their benefits.

Make technology your health and wellness program partner. To find out more, email our Director of Health Strategies, Holly Capelle (

Habitat for Humanity

Since 2009, Hays Companies has been in partnership with Habitat for Humanity in an effort to reduce homelessness and provide affordable housing for families in need.

This month, Hays Companies’ colleagues spent two days working on the final construction process of two homes in Crystal, Minnesota. The process involved landscaping, painting, cleaning, and putting finishing touches on the kitchens. The houses are now complete and are ready for homeowners to move in. Robert Rangel, Hays Companies’ Director of Claims Management and Volunteer Committee Chair, shared, “It was an exciting and fulfilling couple of days and a great experience to bond with coworkers, learn new skills, and help others in our community.”

One of Hays Companies’ core values is to give back to the communities we are a part of. “We encourage our employees to get involved with projects and organizations that they are passionate about. Habitat for Humanity is a wonderful example of that and one our employees are incredibly enthusiastic about,” said Jim Hays.

Hays Companies’ continued partnership with Habitat for Humanity is one way that we as a company, and as individuals, demonstrate our commitment to the communities where we do business, and where our clients and colleagues live and work.

Visit our Community Relations page to learn more about Hays Companies’ commitment to supporting charities in the communities we serve.

Red Habitat House


Working at Habitat