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Hays Intern Selected as The Council Foundation Scholarship Recipient

The Council Foundation LogoKatie O’Keefe, a student at Drake University and a summer intern in the Hays Marketing Department, has been selected as a recipient of a $5,000 academic scholarship for the 2018-19 year academic year, as announced by The Council Foundation.

The Council Foundation has maintained a competitive scholarship program for over ten years, for which top interns are eligible to be nominated for a $5,000 scholarship, as part of their mission to bring fresh, diverse talent into the brokerage sector. O’Keefe is one of 75 college students across the country who received a Council Foundation scholarship this year.

Of her experience with Hays, O’Keefe stated:

I was initially attracted to Hays’ entrepreneurial work ethic and environment, but my overall experience greatly exceeded my expectations. From the first day with my team, I was treated as a valued team member, and my suggestions were never discounted because of my age or experience. I was given real projects to manage and advance, which pushed me out of my comfort zone and helped to expand my professional skill set.

As a result of my experience with Hays, I have more confidence in myself and a clearer vision for my career path. I look forward to applying the skills I developed to classwork and team projects in my final semester at Drake and beyond.

Here at Hays, a robust internship program has always been a vital part of our identity. We have a long-standing internship program, which last year gave 9 students the opportunity to experience our unique entrepreneurial culture. Our highly-developed program allows students to make meaningful contributions to our corporate identity by collaborating on a summer project that is implemented company-wide at the end of the summer.

At the same time, students are paired with a mentor in their department for the duration of their internship and given real deliverables to contribute to existing timelines as opposed to more basic “intern duties.”  They also enjoy access to high-level company executives and operate in an environment where they are treated as more than “just the intern.”

Hays has long understood that if an internship is successful, the intern in question is more likely to accept or pursue a full-time offer upon graduation. According to an article by The Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers, studies have demonstrated that “internships are the insurance brokerage industry’s most successful tool in the recruitment of college students.”  It is one of the many ways that we have continued to stay ahead of the curve when looking for and attracting the best young talent.

Hays Headquarters Named Largest Insurance Brokerage in Minneapolis

Hays Companies is pleased to announce that our Minneapolis office, which is also the location of our corporate Headquarters, was named the largest insurance brokerage in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area (also known as the Twin Cities) by the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.

The publication, which is amongst the most prestigious business news outlets in the state of Minnesota, surveyed offices located within the 24-county metro area. For businesses that are headquartered in the Twin Cities, such as ours, results were based on companywide revenue for all operations as well as the number of employees.

We’re especially honored by this recognition as it not only reflective of our growth as an organization, but also the continued support of the community in which we were founded.

To view the complete list, please click here.

Hays Companies Volunteers with Habitat for Humanity

For almost a decade, Hays Companies has built a strong partnership with Habitat for Humanity to combat homelessness and provide affordable housing for families within the communities where we work and live.

This month, Hays team members assisted with building a Habitat for Humanity home in St. Paul, Minnesota. Of the experience, Robert Rangel, Hays Companies’ Director of Claims Management and Volunteer Committee Chair said, “It was a fulfilling day for our team. It’s not every day you have the opportunity to learn how to construct a garage and build a roof with your colleagues. We were grateful to be out in the community together giving back to a wonderful organization.”

One of Hays Companies’ core values is being impactful and contributing to the communities we serve. Habitat for Humanity is a great outlet for employees to live out this value by volunteering.  “We encourage our employees to get involved with organizations in the community that they’re passionate about. Habitat for Humanity is an organization with a mission that Hays’ employees believe in,” stated Chief Executive Officer, Jim Hays.

Hays Financial Group Welcomes James Miley as Vice President

MINNEAPOLIS, MN – James Miley has joined the Hays Financial Group as a Vice President. A division of Hays Companies, Hays Financial Group provides investment, wealth management, and fiduciary services on behalf of their clients.

Miley brings with him 10+ years of experience in wealth management with a focus on corporate retirement planning, which was accrued in his former role as a Financial Advisor at RBC Wealth Management and Merrill Lynch, respectively. Miley has also achieved the Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor certification from the College of Financial Planning and the Accredited Investment Fiduciary® (AIF®) from FI360, which he acquired to better serve his client’s retirement planning needs and to help the ever-evolving 401(k) market. In 2016, he was listed as one of the top 401 Retirement Plan Advisors by the Financial Times.

In his new role, Miley will continue to relentlessly pursue his client’s desired outcomes, offering personalized advice and access to the specialized investment services demanded by sophisticated investors. His listening skills and passion for successful outcomes keep him engaged in helping clients coordinate their financial affairs.

When he isn’t working, James can be found training for an endurance event, spending time with one of his four children, or participating in an event for one of the many non-profit organizations of which he is a volunteer and board member (notably: Boys & Girls Club, Nativity County Fair, and the St. Thomas Academy Alumni Association).

* The AIF designation signifies knowledge of fiduciary responsibility as well as the ability to implement policies and procedures that meet a defined standard of care.

Brian Whinnery named a “2017 Young Gun”

Brian Whinnery, director of Hays Financial Group at Hays Companies, has been named a “2017 Young Gun” by the National American Retirement Association (NAPA). The award recipients are recognized as the future leaders of the retirement plan advisor industry. Congratulations, Brian!

To read the full article, please click here.

Centered on fiduciary governance for employer groups and the individual financial goals of their employees, Brian provides customized solutions in the qualified retirement plan space. Brian was formerly a financial advisor at RBC Wealth Management for over 5 years prior to joining Hays Companies. He has over 12 years of corporate retirement plan experience and was previously named by the Financial Times as one of the top retirement plan advisors in the country in 2015.

If you have any questions, please contact Brian Whinnery at bwhinnery@hayscompanies.com

All. Together. Giving.

Margaret Mead once said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”  Hays Companies is putting this thought into action through our hard work and support of Habitat for Humanity, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing affordable shelter, eliminating substandard housing and homelessness worldwide. For the past five years, the Hays Volunteer Team has built safe shelters for families in need and worked in partnership with other businesses on the Entrepreneurs House. Mik Gusenius, Chair of the Entrepreneurs House Committee shared, “Since Hays has become a part of the program, the House has had its best fundraising years, raising more than $500,000 and contributing more than 2,000 volunteer build days. Hays has been an integral part of the continued growth.”

During the all-day build, Hays volunteers guided by experts, landscaped, framed pre-assembled walls, shingled roofs and installed flooring. At the end, when the houses were completed, volunteers had the opportunity to greet the future homeowners.

Hays Director of Claims Management, Robert Rangel said, “It was an inspiring day and a great way to bond with coworkers and learn new skills.”

At Hays we know that a strong, vibrant community doesn’t just happen.  CEO, Jim Hays stated it simply: “We believe at Hays that it’s absolutely necessary to give back to the communities in which we live. We encourage employees to find projects and organizations that they care about and we support participation at all levels. Our community initiatives give our employees great purpose which helps build a positive culture.”

On January 28th, Habitat for Humanity held the dedication ceremony for the 2013 Entrepreneurs House. We are honored to be a part of this organization.

Some of the 2013 Hays Habitat for Humanity volunteers

Some of the Hays Habitat for Humanity volunteers

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Hays Volunteer Team assembling walls of the house.

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Hays Graphics Specialist, Dennis Shogren and Senior Claims Analyst, Allison Robshaw work together to secure flooring.