Customer Stories

From Sparse Recruiting to Digital Consolidation: Colonial Life Reimagines Talent Acquisition


Colonial Life faces the challenge of supporting the talent acquisition process for a network of independent managers, all of whom are contractors who sell Colonial Life products. Before adopting Avature, the company resorted to a recruiting strategy built entirely on paper, and their unique needs meant that a one-size-fits-all solution would never work for them.

In less than a year, Colonial Life has modernized the talent acquisition experience, sourced 500,000 candidates, and simplified compliance by leveraging Avature’s reporting capabilities. Their platform combines CRM, ATS, Referrals and a suite of microsites tailored to the specific needs of each stakeholder.

About Colonial Life

Founded in 1937, Colonial Life provides U.S. employers with benefits and enrollment services for their employees. Now a subsidiary of Unum Group, the team of more than 10,000 sales representatives and 1,000 home-office professionals serves more than 3.7 million people in over 90,000 companies and organizations.

The Recruiting Landscape Before Avature

Difficulties Fostering Change in a Large Contractor Workforce
Colonial Life has a unique sales workforce made up of individual contractors spread across 47 territories and a small-but-mighty team of full-time employees who support them from a central office. With these independent consultants focused primarily on selling Colonial Life products, recruitment efforts to grow their sales teams were at the bottom of the priority list. Contractors each had their own recruitment and documentation processes. Without the necessary data to understand these processes and identify gaps, Colonial Life’s Territory Offices had difficulty coaching and supporting them.

Data Compliance
The lack of visibility was particularly problematic because, as an insurance company, Colonial Life has an increased responsibility to be compliant. Historical records were nonexistent, meaning that once contractors left the company, those who took their place started with nothing. Because Colonial Life had yet to find a suitable CRM or ATS system to store this information centrally, they had no clear view of the communications that were sent to candidates or to which of those candidates were currently in the pipeline.


Responding to the need to centralize and easily access information, Colonial Life launched a combined CRM and ATS platform from Avature. With the addition of a career site, referral portal, and Hiring Manager Portal, Colonial Life successfully convinced stakeholders to adopt the platform and achieve the company’s goal.

Tailored Sites for Each Stakeholder
With a hiring manager portal, Colonial Life consolidated all key tasks for their Territory Managers — like tracking emails, viewing resumes, and calling and following-up with candidates —  into one place. This solution keeps them engaged in the easiest and simplest way possible.

Referrals are the number-one source of top candidates at Colonial Life, and thanks to their Avature Referral portal, all are collected in a single database. This has enabled Colonial Life to motivate employees through referral contests as an integral part of their Talent Acquisition strategy.

Colonial Life uses these portals to leverage Avature technology for its workforce and to foster technology adoption. In combination with a highly customized career site, Colonial Life has created a streamlined and straightforward application process for candidates.

Real-time Data Sharing Between Stakeholders

Previously, recruiters and hiring managers spent a lot of time communicating about candidate status. With Avature, managers now have personalized dashboards that help them identify where each candidate is in the process. Recruiters can likewise view progress in real-time and track who is following up with candidates and who is not.

Recruiters also are notified automatically when applications are submitted for their specific territory through the career site. This enables them to effectively follow-up, move candidates through the system, and stay on top of key tasks that ultimately help people begin their careers with Colonial Life more quickly.

“Our tools have to make recruiting simple, be user-friendly, and require minimal training that they could pick up very easily and run with it. For these reasons, we chose Avature.”

Lauren Addy, National Recruiting Director, Colonial Life


High Adoption
Independent contractors are not required to use the platform. As Colonial Life’s National Recruiting Director Lauren Addy observes, when 140 out of 500 contractors switch voluntarily to using the Hiring Manager Portal, “that speaks volumes about the product.” With 20,000+ logins and more than 500 users, the solution has processed more than 17,000 applications and 320 individuals have been hired. All of this was accomplished in less than 8 months.

Adoption will continue to grow as Colonial Life adds more Avature solutions to support their TA strategy, including a time slot portal for automatic interview scheduling, an events portal for their college recruiting efforts, and a CRM dashboard to boost the reporting capabilities for Territory Managers. All candidate data is centralized and visible for tracking, analysis, and verifying compliance.