Careers at Prudential
Prudential Financial’s mission is to help its customers achieve financial prosperity and peace of mind.
Prudential Financial is a provider of insurance, investment management, and other financial products and services. The firm operates four reportable business segments:
U.S. Retirement Solutions and Investment Management – Consists of the following three divisions:
- Individual Annuities - Provides fixed and variable annuity products.
- Retirement – Provides retirement investment and income products and services.
- Asset Management – Provides a wide range of investment management and advisory services.
U.S. Individual Life and Group Insurance – Creates and distributes individual term life, variable life, and universal life insurance products.
International Insurance – Creates and distributes individual life insurance, retirement, and related products, including certain health products with fixed benefits.
Corporate and Other – Consists of corporate items and initiatives not allocated to the company’s business segments, and divested businesses that do not qualify for “discontinued operations” accounting treatment under U.S. GAAP.
In 1873 insurance agent John Fairfield Dryden founded the Widows and Orphans Friendly Society in New Jersey – the first insurance company in the U.S. to offer insurance to low-income consumers. In 1875 Dryden learned that the British Prudential Assurance Company had the same mission, and, impressed by their range of services, changed his firm’s name to Prudential Friendly Society.
Unable to obtain financial backing from investors to build the company, Dryden persuaded various Newark, NJ citizens to buy $30,000 of capital stock combined. In 1877 its name changed once more, to the Prudential Insurance Company of America. Its only product at this time was Industrial Insurance, which covered funeral and burial expenses, with weekly premiums as low as three cents.
Within a few years, Prudential was selling plans in New Jersey, New York, and Philadelphia, and began making inroads on the growing middle class. By 1985 assets reached $1 million and it sold its one millionth policy. In 1881 Dryden was elected President by the board’s directors. During his reign, the company saw significant growth and introduced a number of major innovations.
The next few decades saw many milestones. In 1896 Prudential selected the famed Rock of Gibraltar as its official logo in an effort to communicate the security and strength it offered to its customers. In 1909 it opened its first international office, in Toronto, Canada. In 1942 it transformed into a mutual company, and in 2001 it went public. Prudential now offers a wide variety of insurance products.
Benefits at Prudential
Business model of Prudential
Prudential has a segmented market business model, with customer groups that have different needs. The company targets its offerings at retail (individual) and institutional customers.
Prudential offers three primary value propositions: accessibility, risk reduction, and brand/status.
The company creates accessibility by providing a wide variety of options. It offers a broad range of financial products and services, including life insurance, mutual funds, annuities, investment management, and retirement-related services. Its ability to do so is partly due to the fact that it has acquired numerous firms since its founding, including Bache & Co., American Skandia, AIG Edison, AIG Star, the retirement branch of CIGNA Corporation, and the individual life insurance business of The Hartford. This strategy has enabled it to greatly diversify its portfolio.
The company has reduced risk by maintaining high safety and security standards. Its specific actions include the following:
- Maintaining an official code of conduct that instructs staffers to adhere to ethical behavior
- Requiring new employees to take an ethics course and affirm their commitment
- Providing regular training and education on ethical standards and compliance
- Requiring employees to disclose any perceived or potential conflicts of interest
- Operating Global Business Ethics & Integrity, an enterprise ethics office that oversees Prudential's business ethics programs around the world
- Encouraging employees to communicate with local ethics officers or call a hotline for guidance
The company has established a powerful brand due to its success. It is the second largest life insurance firm in the U.S., the fourth largest seller of individual life insurance in the U.S., and the ninth largest institutional asset manager globally. It manages over $1.3 trillion in assets and $3.5 trillion in life insurance policies. It maintains offices in 47 countries and territories across North America, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. Lastly, it has won many honors, including the following:
- Recognition as one of the “Most Admired Companies in the World“ by Fortune
- Recognition as one of one of the “Top Money Managers” by Pension & Investments
- Recognition as a “Best Place to Work“ by the Human Rights Campaign
- Recognition as a "Best for Vets Employer" by Military Times magazine seven years in a row
- Recognition as a "Top 100 Companies for Working Mothers" by Working Mother magazine Hall of Fame Member
- A Work-Life Seal of Distinction from the Alliance for Work-Life Progress
Prudential’s main channels are its proprietary and third-party distribution networks. These include:
- The company’s direct sales team
- Third party brokers, financial advisors, and benefits consultants
- Third-party product manufacturers and distributors
The company promotes its offering through its social media pages, advertising, and conferences.
Prudential’s customer relationship is primarily of a self-service nature. Customers utilize its service while having limited interaction with employees. The company’s website provides answers to frequently asked questions and a library that includes forms for Retirement, Life Insurance, Annuities, Mutual Funds & Investments, Group Disability & Life Insurance plans.
The site also features “Prudential Research & Perspectives“, a section that includes self-help resources such as articles, research reports, and white papers. That said, there is a personal assistance component in the form of phone and e-mail support.
Prudential’s business model entails designing and developing its products and services for customers.
Prudential’s key partners are the various entities that help distribute its products/services to clients, including banks, wirehouses, and third-party brokers, financial advisors, and benefits consultants.
Prudential’s main resources are its human resources, who include the insurance and investment professionals who design and develop its products and services, the sales employees who promote and sell them, and the customer service employees who provide support.
Prudential has a cost-driven structure, aiming to minimize expenses through significant automation and low-price value propositions. Its biggest cost driver is cost of insurance benefits provided. Other major drivers are in the areas of administration and sales/marketing, both fixed costs.
Prudential has three revenue streams:
- Insurance premiums earned from the sale of individual life insurance, group life, and disability insurance, retirement, and annuity contracts
- Transaction fees, which include:
- Mortality, expense, and asset management fees earned from the sale and servicing of separate account products such as variable life insurance and variable annuities and other products such as universal life insurance
- Asset management and administrative fees earned from the distribution and management of mutual funds, retirement products, and other asset management products and services
- Interest earned from the investment of general account and other funds
info: John Strangefeld earned a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration at Susquehanna University and an MBA at the University of Virginia. He previously served in various senior roles at Prudential, including Vice Chairman responsible for Prudential's U.S. businesses.
info: Mark B. Grier earned Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Economics at Eastern Illinois University and an MBA at The University of Rochester. He previously served as Chief Financial Officer of Prudential and as Executive Vice President of Chase Manhattan Bank.
info: Stephen Pelletier earned a Bachelor’s degree at Northwestern University and a Master’s degree at Yale University. He previously served as President of Prudential Annuities and as Chairman and CEO of Prudential International Investments.
info: Robert Falzon earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics at Rutgers University and an MBA at Columbia University. He previously served as Treasurer of Prudential, as Managing Director of Prudential Real Estate Investors, and as CEO of its European arm.
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