Bigger Things for an Extraordinary Organization
What CLM’s Acquisition by The Institutes Means for You
By Eric Gilkey
It’s hard to believe that CLM is just 11 years old.
Having originally begun as the Council on Ethical Billing back in 2007, it later became clear that ethical billing was just one piece of a bigger litigation management puzzle, so the organization refocused and renamed itself the Council on Litigation Management. Years later, after noticing insurance claims professionals were seeking out and utilizing its resources and events, it pivoted once again to respond to the needs it saw in the industry, becoming the Claims and Litigation Management Alliance.
With each change came opportunities for growth in the organization’s size, influence, and importance to its supporters. This tremendous growth in scope, resources, and membership—45,000 professionals and counting—has made it the largest and, arguably, most important association in the industry through the way it has reshaped the approach to claims and litigation management.
So when CLM Founder Adam Potter announced the sale of CLM to The Institutes on June 1, 2018, it marked another major milestone in the growth and vision of the organization.
Recognizing how important CLM had become to its members and fellows, Potter saw an opportunity to secure its future while also significantly expanding the resources and services it can offer. “CLM has become a much-needed organization for education, networking, and training. Our boards and membership have made tremendous contributions in helping to shape the CLM and elevate the industry,” says Potter. “Over the years, I began thinking that it would be a loss to the industry if something happened to it, so it was important to me to secure its place and legacy. When CLM started, it was one little corner of the industry, but as it has evolved over the years, it has become about so much more. This sale solidifies the future of CLM for all of the membership.”
Securing that home and future meant locating the right owner, one he found with The Institutes. Well known in the industry and revered for its Chartered Professional Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) and Associate in Claims (AIC) designation programs, The Institutes is a not-for-profit organization with a century of experience educating risk and insurance professionals.
Peter Miller, The Institutes’ president and CEO, says both companies are aligned from a cultural and values standpoint. “The most obvious overlap is that we both have a long-standing commitment to serving claims professionals by providing high-quality networking and educational programs, says Miller. “We both have a shared goal of educating and empowering those working in and connected to the risk management and insurance claims industry. CLM also has in-person and seminar offerings that will enhance our existing face-to-face educational opportunities and complement our traditional textbook and virtual knowledge solutions.”
For CLM members and fellows, the organization continues on unchanged, but aligning under The Institutes’ umbrella comes with some significant perks, both tangible and intangible.
“First, it means CLM is now not-for-profit, which aligns with nearly every other professional association out there, creating a greater sense of community,” says Potter. “Second, CLM members and fellows will be able to leverage the increased resources from The Institutes. CLM isn’t changing in any other way.”
Potter also mentions CLM’s work on launching the Universal Claims Certification (UCC), a legislative effort that seeks to develop a uniform approach for certifying multi-state insurance claims professionals. He says being part of The Institutes enhances this effort by leveraging the credibility and reputation of The Institutes’ designation programs.
“The UCC is unbelievably important, and it is a game changer for the industry not only because it holds claims professionals to a higher standard, but also because it elevates the profession and simplifies and streamlines adjuster licensing,” says Potter.
Securing a home for CLM means that other CLM initiatives and staples, such as Claims College and its annual conference, will remain unchanged and positioned for growth.
“All current products, magazines, events, solutions, and services will remain in place,” says Miller. “Members and fellows will continue to work with the same people to elevate knowledge and achieve professional goals. This acquisition simply changes the ownership structure, ensuring that we serve our customers to the best of our abilities. We believe the expertise, knowledge, and ideas within CLM will help us to continue to be innovative.”
Miller says The Institutes has always been a leader in educating risk and insurance professionals, and that this acquisition will help them continue to grow as a leader while also strengthening the CLM.
“We are always exploring new ways to help risk management and insurance professionals throughout all stages of their careers, and we believe that bringing on CLM is the best possible path to realize our full potential and to best serve our current and future customers. It enables us to better serve as a knowledge partner, and it enhances our ability to educate, train, and empower professionals within our industry so that they can best help individuals and companies succeed. That is ultimately our goal.”
“While the sale is the end of one era, it’s the beginning of a terrific new one with tremendous potential and opportunity for CLM and The Institutes,” says Potter. “I’m proud of what we built, and I’m grateful to the membership for their years of support. I leave CLM confident in knowing that there is so much more to achieve in the years ahead, and together our membership, staff, and The Institutes will elevate the organization to an even more prominent role in the industry.”