Ranked 26 of 40 sectors
The popularity index ranks the sectors graduates chose most frequently during registration since 2000.
Average salary for jobs in Insurance compared to the average salary for all jobs posted to graduate-jobs.com
Insurance is one of the traditional routes for graduates to pursue after university. The field offers a lot in terms of professional development, a challenging career and excellent salaries. Insurance can be perfect for a graduate from any background. The sector offers various roles, but the work is primarily divided between roles as Brokers, Underwriters and Actuaries. The variety of roles needs applicants with different strengths to be successful. Some of the bigger Insurance companies are based in London and relocation is a very realistic possibility for a candidate who wants to work for some of the bigger Insurance organisations.
The Insurance sector can be valuable alternative for any graduate regardless of their degree or discipline. Many of the big employers do not look for graduates to have a specific Insurance-related degree but want to make sure that their applicants are well educated and right for the role at their company. This can be beneficial for candidates that are perhaps looking to change career or their degree did not dictate a path. Applicants should also be aware that, although they do not look for a specific degree, they are looking for a high standard of academic achievement and, depending on the company, might request GCSE and A level results. Many of the individual skills needed for different Insurance departments can be applied across them all.
Like all professional careers the more experience and knowledge a candidate can bring to the application process, the better. If a candidate has managed to secure themselves a few weeks working in an Insurance Brokers or work shadowing an Underwriter, employers are going to be impressed. Many of the larger Insurance corporations run summer programmes and internships. Graduates would be advised to get themselves onto these to really gain some excellent experience in a company. Making the effort and coming with prior knowledge really can help the candidate make that first step onto the career ladder.
Depending on which Insurance department a candidate was looking to go into, they will need different skills to try and impress employers with. For roles in Insurance Brokering, candidates need to be confident and capable sales people. Brokers are in charge of organising Insurance policies with clients and customers, having the confidence to sell and pitch.
Insurance Brokers need to have excellent skills in customer service and building and maintaining client relationships. If a candidate can demonstrate excellent customer service and that they understand the client's needs and expectations, Insurance employers are likely to take that application further. Similarly to customer service and client relations, candidates need to demonstrate excellent professional skills of organisation, preparing reports and communication between departments. Employers will be looking for these sorts of skills when looking to take on entry level Insurance Brokers.
Insurance Underwriters are responsible for producing policies for clients. This involves assessing the risk, deciding what a client will pay, how much cover they receive and finally whether it is in the company's interests to accept the risk and insure the client. Each Underwriter is presented with a company specific set of guidelines to aid them when acting on behalf of the company.
For these kinds of roles, graduates need to prove that they are meticulous with their work. This requires analytical skills when assessing the positives and negatives of a particular policy and client. Underwriters need to be thorough when they are drafting up these policies. They also need to have perfect expression and clarity in their communication. Policies need to be completely accurate when they are writing them so that there is no confusion when they are handed over to clients. Graduates could prove this to their employers by making reference to their degrees. Many skills, such as tight expression and analytic skills, are evident from degrees such as History, Politics, or Economics.
Actuarial is a different part of Insurance and is concerned with calculating risk and uncertainty. The way Actuaries do this is by using probabilities, maths, economics, science and computer science to determine the extent of the risk, which will go onto affect the premiums and the overall cost of the client's policy. The importance of being accurate with the Actuary's assessment is vital. Their concerns are mainly financial, but have been known to turn their skills elsewhere, in risk assessment for example. The work can be involved with complicated numerical systems and formulas; however graduates that want to move into this sector should be well aware of the mathematical demands of the role.
Candidates that want to move into Actuarial need to be excellent with maths, statistics and probability. The role requires too much important work to allow room for error. Actuaries need to have excellent problem solving capabilities so that when conducting day to day assessments, complications can be breezed past. Parts of Actuarial have a human element to them, when dealing with pensions and similar, so evidence of working with people will really add to a candidate's application.
My inital interview was with a member of the HR department in an attempt to understand my background and personality and the fit to the business. IT lasted around 20 minutes…