What Do Insurance Underwriters Do?
Insurance underwriters have to evaluate different insurance applicants. They must assess the degree of risk for each applicant, and whether or not their application should be accepted. To put it simply, an insurance underwriter accepts and rejects certain risks in the name of the insurance company that they work for.In upcoming years, this type of occupation is expected to decrease by about 6% across the United States. That means that there will not be as many job openings annually.
Insurance Underwriters Skills and Abilities
In order to be a successful insurance underwriter, you should have certain skills and abilities. You have to have great customer service skills with a technical knowledge of clerical procedures. You should be able to actively listen and express information clearly. It is very important that you are able to read applications and then make definitive decisions based on amount of risk and the cost it may have for the insurance company. Because you have to make so many decisions, you should also be able to use inductive reasoning.
Insurance Underwriters Duties
Your duties as an insurance underwriter will vary based on your level of experience and the company that you work for. Obviously, the main thing you will do is review insurance applications and use your inductive reasoning to decide whether or not they should be rejected or accepted. However, there is more to the job than that. For example, you have to make sure that you have all of the information you need to make an educated decision. In that vein, you may have to write to medical personnel, field representatives and others in order to get more information. You will spend a lot of time reviewing applications and documents in order to assess the amount of risk, but you may also have to work with insurance agents throughout the process.
Insurance Underwriters Tools and Technology
There are a few tools and technology that you have to be familiar with in order to be efficient as an insurance underwriter. You will have to be able to use a computer, calculator and scanner in order to be able to receive applications and other documents necessary to assess risk. You have to know how to use certain database software, so that you can keep an accurate record of all of your findings. To help you analyze finances, you will also have to know how to work with a financial analysis software.
Education and Training for Insurance Underwriters
Before you can become an insurance underwriter, you have to have a Bachelor’s degree. Many companies hire recent graduates to be underwriters, which means that you do not necessarily need any related experience. Of course, related experience is never a bad thing. The job does require some on the job training. You should also make sure to take applicable courses:
- Actuarial Science
- Insurance Fundamentals
- Risk Management
These courses help give you the foundation you need to be successful as an insurance underwriter.
Insurance Underwriter Salary
Salary for an insurance underwriter can vary from $39,200 to $113,000. Your education, previous experience, location and the company that you work for are the main factors that affect your salary. The average insurance underwriter in the United States makes about $64,200.
Insurance Underwriter Jobs by Geography
When you are thinking about your future career, it is important to realize just how much geography can affect your success. Where you live can increase or decrease your chance of getting an insurance underwriter position. States like Arizona, Florida and Washington are expected to have the most growth for this occupation. However, the average salary also varies by location. Arizona and Washington are slightly above the national average at $65,700 and $73,100 respectively, while Florida comes in at $56,400 on average. You need to think about all of the factors that affect success when you set out on a career path.