American auto insurance company GEICO won the Exceptional Employer Award for its Indianapolis-based Center of Excellence tech operation during TechPoint’s 20th annual Mira Awards honoring the best of tech in Indiana.
What began in Indianapolis as a service center for the nation’s second-largest auto insurance company GEICO with 250 associates, is now 1,400 employees strong. The GEICO Center of Excellence, established in late July last year, currently employs more than 200 technologists, a number that is on track to be tripled in the next few years. Perhaps one of the most impressive recruiting efforts documented in the region, GEICO hired a total of 167 people over 167 days during 2018.
The Mira Awards judges think GEICO has demonstrated remarkable faith in Central Indiana as an emerging tech hub as well as in the available tech talent in the community by establishing its Center of Excellence and through its subsequent support in the growth of the tech ecosystem through employee training and community engagement. (GEICO associates volunteered 2,400 hours to serve their community, benefiting 59 organizations throughout the city and state.) Additionally, GEICO has attracted top-tier tech talent from out-of-state, including the 30% of its workforce that relocated to join the newly formed venture in Indianapolis.
GEICO has invested $4 million into training its Indianapolis employees, Including curating a 12-week Academy to ensure that engineers and software analysts were well-trained in cutting edge cloud technologies, agile development and insurance basics. Through investing in long lasting partnerships in the Indianapolis area and working with the Eleven Fifty Academy, IWiT (Indy Women in Tech) and over 15 different universities in the Midwest, GEICO helped provide insight on curriculum and leveraged strategic partnerships to help bring awareness to different programs available to expand cloud training opportunities in schools.
A multi-million dollar office revamp gave way to a more engaging and inviting workspace equipped with advanced team collaboration solutions that connect GEICO’s Hoosier employees to those around the United States. In addition to entrusting its Hoosier workforce with developing software that redefines the insurance industry, GEICO’s commitment to diversity and inclusion is as laudable on paper as it is in practice, resulting in outcomes like women making up 42% of the company’s local leadership.
TechPoint, the nonprofit, industry-led growth accelerator for Indiana’s tech ecosystem, honored the successes and innovation of Indiana people, places, companies and products at the JW Marriott Indianapolis during the 20th annual Mira Awards gala presented by Angie’s List, Infosys, and Salesforce. With a sold-out crowd of 1,400 attendees—up another 100 from last year—this was the largest Mira Awards in the program’s 20-year history.
Only a handful of the 2019 nominees existed as companies 20 years ago, and 82 percent were founded in just the past 10 years. Similar to the rapid adoption of the iPhone starting a decade ago and streaming services today, tech businesses in Indiana have grown from a few pioneers to a fast growing, vibrant industry that is a key driver of job growth and a critical part of the state’s economic success story.
A total of 14 award winners and honorees were chosen from the 109 outstanding people, places companies and products that were selected as nominees for their achievements during the 2018 calendar year. Fifty-two independent, volunteer judges spent more than 850 total hours evaluating applications, interviewing nominees, and selecting this year’s winners. Judges included company founders, CEOs and presidents, CTOs, CIOs, and other subject matter experts.
The Mira Awards are named after the first of the brilliant variable stars to be discovered – the Mira Star. It is also the Latin root meaning “worthy of admiration, wonderful, marvelous.” The awards represent the best of tech in Indiana each year.