What does an insurance broker do?
Brokers work independently to arrange deals between clients and insurers. They advise clients on the most appropriate policies for them.
Personal insurance brokers generally deal directly with individual clients or companies and arrange policies for home, motor, travel or pet insurance, while commercial insurance brokers deal with more high-value insurance for areas such as the marine, aviation, energy and finance sectors.
Brokers today use their market knowledge to structure complex risk solutions for clients, primarily in the key broker markets of non-life commercial insurance and reinsurance. These solutions may be limited to cover in the UK but in an increasingly globalised economy the role of brokers is taking on an increasingly international dimension, with brokers handling multinational risks and working with providers in more than one country.
Where do insurance brokers work?
Individual and business insurance buyers often need expert advice to enable them to assess the risks they have, to help them minimise those risks in a practical way, and to match their needs to the best seller of insurance in the market.
Many people and businesses choose to buy insurance directly, but others – and in particular commercial buyers – use an intermediary.
Insurance brokers work as intermediaries either as an individual or part of a firm that provides independent advice to meet specific customer needs, choosing from their market knowledge.
The starting salary for trainee insurance brokers can be from £16,000 – £22,000, this can then go up if you’re on a graduate scheme where the salary would be between £22,000 -£28,000 depending on the company you work for. In general, qualified brokers can earn anything from £20,000 to £50,000 for more senior brokers or account managers. Insurance brokers can also earn money through commission and fees based on the amount of insurance policies sold.
Numerically-related or business degrees can be an advantage, but aren’t a requirement for entry to the profession. Training programmes vary considerably, with larger broking firms offering more opportunities for structured training programmes. These typically involve job rotations for experience of different areas of work, over a period of 18 months to two years.
There has been a growing emphasis in recent years on graduate-level recruitment and the development of graduate training programmes that include CII professional qualifications. This provides a structured framework leading to Chartered Insurance Broker status. Many employers grant study time and provide help with tuition fees and the cost of learning materials.