8 Reasons Why You Should Consider a Career in the Insurance Industry
Whether you're just starting in the workforce or are ready to make a change, looking for the right career can be a difficult task. If you're wondering what career is right for you, it can be overwhelming to figure out where to start.
Working in the insurance industry is an option you should strongly consider. Well over 2.5 million people in the United States work in this sector, which has a long, rich history, and a promising future. There are many career paths you could pursue, so you'll want to make sure you choose a job that not only helps you make a living but is also meaningful and gives you plenty of opportunities to grow your career.
Why work for an insurance company? We're going to discuss eight great reasons, including the job outlook, pay, variety of career paths, and more. If you want a stable, rewarding job you can start right away, consider these eight reasons why a career in insurance is an excellent option.
1. Join a Stable Industry
While some industries come and go, insurance has been — and always will be — an important part of our society. As long as life involves risks, we will always need insurance. The concept of insurance is as old as human society itself. The earliest evidence of insurance comes from as far back as 4000 to 3000 BCE.
In the United States, the first insurance company was the Philadelphia Contributionship, started by Benjamin Franklin in 1752. Cigna, which is a global health insurance company today, was founded as a marine insurance company in Pennsylvania in 1792, making it one of the oldest companies in America.
Needless to say, the insurance industry has a long and rich history and isn't going anywhere anytime soon. That's because insurance doesn't lose its relevance as times change. Culture changes, technology develops, our economy has its ups and downs, and throughout it all, insurance remains an important part of people's lives. Individual insurance companies may come and go, but you can count on the industry as a whole to remain stable.
If you want to work in an industry you can count on to have a relevant place in society for decades and even centuries to come, the insurance industry is the perfect choice.
2. Become a Professional Who Is in High Demand
The insurance industry isn't just stable — it's growing. Employment for insurance sales agents, who make up the majority of employees within the insurance industry, is expected to grow by 10% from 2016 to 2026. That projected growth is significantly higher than the average national growth for other occupations. More specifically, the BLS projects an especially rapid growth rate in the employment of health insurance sales agents over the coming years.
Such rapid growth is great news for anyone considering a career in the insurance industry, and particularly in insurance sales. As the workforce dominating this field leaves to retire, they leave countless openings in their wake. Insurance companies need to fill these openings, which means you have great prospects for finding a job as a new employee entering the field.
If you want to enter a field where your energy and skills are in high demand, then the insurance industry is a great choice. Just as you can count on the industry to remain stable, you can count on there always being an increase in the need for your services to help keep this vital industry going.
3. Succeed Without a Degree
Another great reason to consider a career in insurance is that it's easy to get started whenever you decide you want to give it a try. Many jobs require you to have a four-year degree in order to even be considered for a position. This requirement creates a difficult obstacle for the more than 40% of the workforce that does not have a college degree.
While there's nothing wrong with attending college, many people are discovering they can find rewarding careers without dedicating years and thousands of dollars to obtaining a degree. In the insurance industry, especially if you want to be a sales agent, the great news is that you don't need a degree. A high school diploma or equivalent is typically the only education requirement.
Since you receive on-the-job training, you don't need previous experience, either. This is great news for workers who are frustrated by the experience requirements that many job ads include. Don't be disheartened by the fact that so many jobs require degrees or years of experience. If you want to work in the insurance industry, all you need to succeed is the right ambition and attitude.
4. Earn a Good Salary
Pay is always something to consider with any job. In the case of insurance, it's one of the main benefits of working in the insurance industry you'll want to consider. This may come as a surprise to you if you've heard that insurance agents' incomes aren't dependable because their pay is entirely dependent on commission. If this were true, then there would be some uncertainty involved with getting paid.
Fortunately, the idea that an insurance agent's pay comes solely from commission is largely false. While commission-based pay can be a great bonus that rewards your individual successes along the way, in most cases, you'll also be able to rely on a steady salary.
Insurance employees' incomes aren't just steady — they're relatively high. The average pay for an insurance sales agent was over $50,000 in 2018, which is well over the national average for all occupations. Especially considering you don't have to take on student loan debt before you can work in the insurance industry, this kind of salary can help you make the comfortable living you desire.
If you want to earn a higher salary in the insurance industry, there are other positions to consider, like an actuary, for example. This position requires a bachelor's degree, but it may be worth the schooling since actuaries make six figures, and employment opportunities for this career path are growing at an astoundingly high rate of 22%.
5. Choose From a Variety of Career Paths
One reason anyone should consider the insurance industry is because there are a variety of career paths within the industry to accommodate a variety of skills. First, there are broad areas for specialization, like health insurance, life insurance, auto insurance, and so on. There are also distinct positions that play an important role in every type of insurance company. Each of these positions is a possible career path, so you can find which one suits you best. These positions include:
- Actuary: Actuaries are the people who set premiums. This involves complex calculations that weigh out potential risk to help insurance companies maintain an overall profit.
- Claims Adjuster: When a client files a claim, a claims adjuster assesses the situation to see what sort of cash benefits the client should receive. This involves inspecting the scene, talking to the client, and more.
- Claims Examiner: Examiners have the task of reviewing claims that come in and deciding whether they deserve compensation or whether they're invalid and should be denied.
- Insurance Investigator: Since people sometimes commit insurance fraud, insurance investigators are there to investigate suspicious claims and get to the bottom of what really happened.
- Insurance Claims and Policy Processing Clerk: Insurance involves a good deal of paperwork, so claims and policy processing clerks facilitate the administrative aspects of the process so other workers can access the records and current information they need.
- Insurance Sales Agent: Insurance sales agents help individuals, families, and businesses find insurance policies that fit in with their budget and meet their needs. Agents can either sell policies for one insurance provider or work for a brokerage, where they can sell policies from multiple providers.
- Insurance Underwriter: Like actuaries, underwriters assess risk, but in this case, they focus on individuals to assess their personal risk profile in order to determine whether it's smart for an insurance company to take them on as a client.
There are even more opportunities for specialization beyond these job descriptions. If there's a specific market or area that interests you, you can capitalize on this with your insurance career. Since insurance reaches into nearly every area you can imagine, you can take your passion for antiques, technology, travel, or just about anything else, and use it to come up with your niche within the field.
6. Do Something Different Every Day
If you're the type of person who doesn't want a job that feels very repetitive, then you should consider working in insurance. Since insurance companies reach into so many different industries, you get to interact with and learn about these industries and developments that place new demands on insurance companies. For example, the insurance industry has to determine how to handle risks like driverless cars, drones and other technological inventions.
These new developments will affect the insurance industry as a whole from year to year and decade to decade. When you work in the insurance agency, though, you don't have to wait for a big, new technological development to experience some variety in your job. Every day is different when you work in insurance.
You get to visit new places and work with a variety of people. Some people enjoy traveling for their job since it allows them to see the country and have new experiences, all while getting paid instead of spending money. If you enjoy traveling, then you should consider being an insurance sales agent. You'll likely get to spend time traveling to meet with clients, and you may also get to travel to work with different colleagues or attend conferences.
7. Help People
One of the best reasons to work in insurance is that you get to help people every day. Research shows that people care about doing meaningful work. In fact, a Harvard Business Review survey revealed that 9 out of 10 people would take a pay cut if it meant their work would have more meaning. Meaningful work doesn't necessarily mean working for a charity. For-profit businesses can help people, too, and this is certainly true for insurance companies.
Having insurance allows people to enjoy peace of mind when things are going well and helps them pick up the pieces when bad things happen. If you've ever had to file an insurance claim, then you can relate to the feeling of relief knowing you have insurance and don't need to deal with an unexpected financial burden.
Whether you suddenly need to repair your car, rebuild your house, pay legal fees, or get the medical treatment you need, having insurance allows you to take care of it without going into a financial crisis. If you've ever had to grieve the death of a loved one you depended on financially, then you know how much of a blessing a life insurance policy can be.
Insurance companies are for-profit businesses, but that doesn't change the fact that they help people every day. Whether you're helping people select the best policies for them or working with them when they file a claim, you can play an important role in helping people prepare for and get through difficult times.
8. Continue Learning Forever
Last but not least, a great reason to consider a career in the insurance industry is that you'll never stop learning. As the world changes, insurance risks and needs change. This means people who work in the insurance industry have to stay abreast of these changes and learn how to continue to help people and be profitable. Insurance agents must also stay up to date on the current legal regulations.
Whether taking courses, doing your own research, or attending conferences, you'll learn new things about the field and how to do your job even better all the time. Being a lifelong learner keeps your mind sharp and can make your work more meaningful and enjoyable. The opportunity to learn and grow rather than feel stuck makes your career more exciting.
To make sure insurance workers keep their knowledge and skill fresh, every state has certain requirements for continuing education (CE) courses. This ongoing education allows insurance professionals to keep their licensure. Continuing education courses may seem like nothing more than an obligation at times, but these courses help you maintain a growth mindset.
Keep Learning and Growing Your Career Through StateCE
Fortunately, taking your required CE courses is easy with the Continuing Education Program from StateCE. Our course catalog is full of all the classes you need, taught by experts, and you can even see what your state requires. Learn more about our Insurance Continuing Education Program at StateCE. At StateCE, we know there are many benefits of working in the insurance industry, and we're prepared to help you keep your knowledge fresh so you can enjoy a rewarding and successful career.