A career in insurance can be a rewarding career, if you want to pursue a career in insurance and not sure where to start. Here, we break down the steps you need to take to get into insurance, the benefits and what exactly the job entails.
What is Insurance?
Insurance is a service that provides a safety net for businesses and individuals in times of financial need. Such as providing cover for repairing house damage caused by flooding or advising businesses on the risks that could occur and how to protect their finances. There are different types of insurance and this includes personal insurance where insurers cover individuals and their property at a fraction of its value by pooling risk. Another type of insurance is commercial insurance, which lets business owners run their company after unexpected events such as a cyber security attack or natural disasters. Insurance policies allow businesses to protect their assets when faced with these risks. Another type of insurance that is quite different from personal and commercial insurance is Special Risks which exist in the London insurance market. The policies that are involved in special risks insurance cover interesting risks such as if a singer wanted to insure their vocal chords or even extreme situations where thousands of people can take our policies against abduction against aliens.
As with any industry, insurance has a huge range of jobs in different sectors and areas. The five main sectors in insurance are general insurance, commercial/corporate insurance, life insurance, personal insurance and reinsurance. These are the different sectors in seven main areas which are aviation, liability, life, marine, motor, property and pensions. A few of the technical roles particular to insurance that are accessible to graduates include being an underwriter, broker, working in claims, loss adjusting and reinsurance. Find out more detail about these roles and which might be the best for you here.
Insurance career benefits
There are many reasons why you should pursue a career in insurance and these include a excellent earning potential, with some starting salaries on graduate schemes being up to £30,000 per annum, which is much higher the UK’s average for starting salaries. There are other reasons to get into insurance, such as have a social impact through your work, global opportunities and professional development opportunities so there’s always room for growth and improvement in your career!
Graduates and non-graduates can pursue a career in insurance with the right qualifications and training. For graduates the best route would be to get onto a graduate training programme where employers will prefer a 2:1 degree although some companies do consider a 2:2. Most graduate trainee roles hire candidates from degrees of all disciplines such as a business or management degree; however, a degree in maths or engineering will be preferred depending on the role you are applying for especially for actuary roles. For non-graduates, there are many apprenticeships that insurance companies offer and junior positions tailored to school leavers such as the various roles on our insurance jobs board here. Apprenticeships are a fantastic way to get into insurance as you will have the opportunity to learn more about the industry with first hand on-the-job experience with a salary and benefits with some companies even supporting you to study for professional qualifications to further your insurance career. Whichever way you get into insurance, with a degree or not, you will then need to get the CII Advanced Diploma in Insurance (ACII) which the majority of graduate schemes include as well as some apprenticeships. The ACII is a globally recognised professional qualification that takes three years to complete and demonstrates your skills and capabilities to your clients and peers in the industry. If you are graduating in a business, finance or law-related degree, you may be able to transfer credits towards the CII qualification framework which will decrease the amount of time needed to get your ACII so with this route you could complete your qualification in 2 ½ years instead of 3.
Alongside gaining the qualifications for insurance you will need to also demonstrate a range of skills including excellent attention to detail, customer service skills and a way with numbers. Depending on the area of work you pursue in the insurance industry, you would need to be able to analyse different forms of data and convey them well to your clients so communications skills are also essential. These skills can be gained from taking up work experience to learn how to apply them to the job and even during your studies.
Working in insurance is an extremely rewarding career choice and a great industry to grow in, for more information on how to get a career in insurance and to find out what working in insurance is like check out our careers advice page for employees and career guides.