I work in the insurance industry and if you told me when I was in high school, or even in college that I would work for a large insurance carrier I would have laughed and said no way, definitely not! I am so incredibly glad I happened upon my first job out of college at an insurance carrier, it is so much more rewarding and fulfilling that I ever imagined it would be.
My first job after earning my degree was as an Auto Claims Adjuster, I figured I would do that until I found a job I really wanted. What I learned during the first year of my job in a big insurance company was that there was SO many jobs you could do and there was SO much room for growth potential. I got involved in some local groups at work and started building my network and learning about the different departments and roles. I looked at internal job postings and saved the ones I thought sounded interesting and started using their requirements lists to work on my development. I went from Auto claims, to Property Claims, to call center management to where I am now, Underwriting which I really love. I never in a million years would have thought when I was in college that one day I would hold the title of Small Commercial Underwriter, but here I am, and I have so many options ahead of me and avenues I can go within my career becuase of my background and finding myself.
Now I am working on my CPCU Designation to get my specialization which is looked at in my industry like a Masters in Underwriting and will help me meet my career goals moving forward. Unfortunately I am still digging out of a pile of un-necessary debt from my unknown years, and if I could do it over I would have just gotten a business degree from a state school and when I found my passion got my masters in something related and that is relevant to my job like I am doing now with my CPCU.
What is even crazier that I have seen is many of my friends from high school and college changing career paths completely 10 years after graduation and starting in the insurance industry where I started 10 years ago and am miles ahead becuase of my choice to be somewhat practical when I applied to jobs as a fresh college grad. The benefits and job security/stability are such peace of mind.
Hope this helps!
Bill Simonson CIC AFIS
During my tenure, I've only worked on the insurance carrier side. While working as a broker there is the potential to make more money as you are working on commissions, the carrier side has served me and my family very well.
I've experienced moving to different territories for a period of time where I worked as a field rep learning hands on what our customers did and getting to work closely with our loss control reps to visit their business and get taken behind the scenes to all sorts of operations. This to me is the most fun when it comes to the job. I've also been promoted into management rolls where I've been able to share my knowledge with others and help them grow as field underwriters.
Most of all, I've been able to maintain a stable career and income for my family which has allowed for us to enjoy many fun vacations in a multitude of destinations that are all possible to me having a great job in the insurance industry.
Take some time to learn more about the industry and all the areas that are associated with it as it's a great career choice.
Best of luck.
We are answering this question as a group from CNA Insurance (Specialty Lines, Management Liability)--
Our overall experience working in insurance is overwhelmingly positive. Generally speaking, it is a very welcoming industry where people are collaborative and you will be exposed to people with diverse backgrounds. We work in a specialty area of insurance known as Management Liability which focuses on providing insurance that protects the company’s management and board of directors from lawsuits. It is not an area of insurance that many outside the industry are familiar with but is an area where you can integrate many different aspects of personal knowledge through media or interest into your work product.
We find it rewarding to be able to constantly learn and grow as the world evolves and apply what we learn about real time to our job. There is rarely a business headline that we see that doesn’t directly impact the companies we insure. There is also an aspect of insurance in which you develop relationships with your peers and business partners and also learn from each other. Being able to ask tough questions of senior executives is empowering and educational.
Being in insurance, there are a lot of different career paths and you are able to pivot into if you try a line of business that doesn't jive with your interest: Underwriting, Claims, Actuarial, Accounting, Finance, Investments, Operations. In most areas, you can achieve a healthy balance between your career and your personal life as well.
It is also rewarding in a sense that our business is to fulfill a promise to make a person/company whole after a financial loss, which helps companies take risks to create a product or service that can make the world better or more efficient
Best of luck! - CNA Insurance Public and Large Private Management Liability
I've spent several years at a large Insurance carrier handling auto claims. Interacting with customers can be challenging, but also very rewarding. Our customers don't call us when they're having a good day. They call us when they're in need- after their lives are disrupted by a motor vehicle accident/damage to their home/accident at work/slip and fall etc. It's a great feeling when you can support customers through their challenging times and sense the relief on the other side of the phone. An insurance policy is the sale of a promise: to be there for our customers when they need us.
In general, a career in Insurance can be very satisfying. Mastering the skills required in a front line claim handling role (problem solving, critical thinking, communication, empathy) opens the door to many opportunities and career advancement. In my 8 years in Insurance, I've experienced 4 promotions as well as being able to participate in many projects outside of my regular job descriptions.
Most believe the differences are vast between a Commercial vs Federally regulated member (Medicare/Medicaid) but there are no differences, as each person wants to be valued.
The main reason I get up and do my job everyday is the individual members. I want to ensure the experience is the best it can possibly be for each member, and each member that I personally speak with understands that they are valued by me.
The insurance check is the last love letter you will be able to write them.
I had studied insurance law before finding that role, as a gap between tech roles, and it was very interesting to see the "real" side of insurance, with customers, underwriting decisions, and claims. I ultimately moved into a tech role at the insurance company, but that experience "on the shop floor" let me understand the process, business and people in a way that is still valuable in later roles.
I currently work on the underwriting side for a large workers compensation insurance company that focuses on large operations that have strong severity loss potential (Construction/Transportation/Energy/Agribusiness). Similar to the above, being part of the company that responds to injured employees and working with our customers through these crisis type situations are is very fulfilling. We help bring injured employees back to work and also our loss control team works with our customers to help improve their safety programs and prevent injuries in the first place.
Again, insurance isn't regarded as one of the most exciting professions, but it really can be a fulfilling career.
After I graduated from College, I started working in Insurance and I thought it would be a placeholder for me until I get a job in an Accounting Firm. However, once I got here and learned that there was so many options within the industry, I have been here for 10 years. I have been with 3 different companies and I learned something valuable from each one. There is so many things you can do in this space: Accounting, Underwriting, Claims, HR, Tech, Risk Management, Actuary, Marketing, and Audit. You can either work for a Carrier or join an Agency and become a Broker.
My personal overall experience has been rewarding. I have built so many relationships and learned so much along the way.
There isn’t technically a major for this in College, so you get to work with people with different education backgrounds that bring them here.
Good luck to everyone trying to enter this industry!
We answered your question as a team. We have had a positive experience in the Insurance industry. Here are some of the most rewarding aspects of working in Insurance:
- Interacting with a variety of people
- learning about so many different industries
- Within the insurance organization we are able to learn about other Insurance products outside of our own business unit.
- Even when working on the same type of account - as underwriters, we are always looking for nuances
- You can connect to what you're doing in your work - ie - consumer goods products - view a company that you know in a different way - rewarding personally and professionally. you can really connect with the work - everyone has passion - and it makes you want to be passionate as well.
- In Insurance, you can move around within an organization. There is room for professional growth.
- Insurance provides a well rounded understanding of businesses and their insurance needs
- From the underwriting technician role, a career in Insurance has enabled me to understand insurance from the ground up - back office - always learning - always space to grow and learn something new.
Insurance is a great industry for those who want to continuously learn!