Among all the job posts in the insurance industry, insurance underwriters have the responsibility to analyze application forms and determine whether they should be rejected or accepted. These individuals may be required either by independent insurance brokerage companies or insurance carriers.
Normally, they perform the back office role in assistance to insurance agents; however, sometimes they also attend sales calls for completing the application of the clients. They have the knowledge of the terms that are required for the acceptance of application for insurance risk or cover and are the only in- charge on deciding if the application should be accepted.
Insurance underwriter responsibilities are typical and focused. They work at micro level to measure a risk in accordance to the probability of a claim being made by considering several aspects and collecting details from potential clients (policy holders).
The objective is to minimize risk and losses of the organization and give the best output by using their skills.
Almost all the insurance carriers have their own particular set of underwriting guidelines that need to be followed by each employee in order to make the organization work- successfully. One of the most significant duties that an insurance underwriter has to perform in their routine work is to evaluate the risk factors of a small company or an individual before issuing the insurance policy.
He is also responsible for reviewing and processing of applications for the employee's compensation insurance. This involves evaluating eligibility for coverage, suggesting suitable classifications, quotes and coding, preparing certification and policies of insurance and other related functions.
Routine tasks also include advising employees as well as employers on rules, laws and policies associated with the employee's compensation and providing assistance as required. On the basis of the type of insurance being requested, this official may also conduct independent examination of applicants such as background checks or credit.
Most underwriters specialize in a particular type of insurance and the main categories include:
Work activities may slightly change as per the type of insurance they are dealing with; however, some routine duties remain the same and may include:
These insurance officials are those who appraise policy applications and determine the cover associated with the person or property listed in the application form. They decide on providing appropriate cover by considering the financial well-being of the company.
College graduates are given first preference for this position. However, several high school grads who entered into this field as underwriting clerk got promoted to higher posts. Most employers desire for a graduate candidate for this post. Coursework in accounting, finance and business can be helpful, but not compulsorily required. An advanced degree of computer knowledge is essentially required since the data analysis performed in this job is often computerized. Depending on the firm, an MBA can be helpful credential.-
Generally, the entry level jobs do not require any special certification or training. However, acquiring some formal certification is usually significant to progress in the field. The Insurance Institute of America (IIA) and the American Institute for Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriters (AICPCU) lead in the insurance underwriting certification and training. The most respectful credential offered by them is-Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriter (CPCU), and it is awarded either in personal or commercial insurance. This requires qualifying for at least 8 courses out of 11 and having minimum 3 years of relevant experience in the insurance industry.
To get employed as an underwriter, one needs to have knowledge of mathematics, business, statistics, finance and insurance.
A good analytical skill is essential since they have to scrutinize driving records, credit ratings and make comparison of similar policies.
Proficiency in using computer along with knowledge of software is beneficial, as most work is performed on computers. Insurance underwriter responsibilities are of micro level, since they have the authority to take decisions about whether to accept or reject the application.