Accounting Careers in Insurance

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Every year, thousands of accounting students graduate from college and begin searching for work. The bad news is that standing out in that environment can be tough. But the good news is there are several industries where people with an accounting degree are always in high demand.

A great example is accounting and the insurance industry. Taking advantage of many of the skills you developed during your education, insurance accounting jobs can provide job stability, competitive salaries, and ample room for career growth. It’s just a matter of finding the right position.

Accounting in Risk Management & Insurance

Accounting and risk management is actually one of the most natural career paths for an accounting graduate. From claims adjusting and appraisals to sales and actuarial sciences, someone with an accounting background is uniquely equipped with the mathematical, theoretical, and analytical skill set necessary to hit the ground running in these kinds of careers.

Accounting Jobs and Career Paths in Insurance

Moreover, accounting for insurance companies is one of the most high-paying career paths you can pursue with an accounting degree. General insurance accounting can provide a range of options when it comes to opportunities for advancement and schedule flexibility. And if you’re still uncertain which kind of insurance careers might suit you, be sure to check out MyPath’s Career Wizard Tool.

Jobs in Insurance Claims: Adjusting, Appraising, Examining, and Investigating

Insurance adjusters, appraisers, examiners, and investigators all perform related duties, so each position requires many of the same essential skills you’ve learned with an accounting degree. But each also has a specialized role within the claims process, and so each of these insurance claims careers provide slightly different career trajectories.

Adjusters: Adjusters undertake many of the day-to-day tasks necessary for processing claims. That includes things like evaluating insurance claims, negotiating settlements, and authorizing payments.

Appraisers: Claim appraisers are responsible for estimating the value of what is being insured. Most appraisers work in auto damage, inspecting accidents and estimating the cost of repairs.

Examiners: Claims examiners are tasked with reviewing submitted claims, or assisting with complicated ones. These types of insurance accounting jobs are often involved in double-checking the work of adjusters and claimants.

Investigators: Accounting for insurance companies isn’t only about crunching numbers. Similar to claims adjusters, claims investigators are responsible for investigating claims in which fraudulent activity is suspected. That includes everything from seeking to uncover overstated claims to staged accidents.

Starting Salary: $45,000 to $55,000

Median Salary: $64,000

Actuarial Careers for Accounting Majors

Actuaries combine knowledge of financial theory and statistics to help calculate the cost of risk. Though actuaries are widely employed by many kinds of organizations, most are actually employed by the insurance industry. In addition to a bachelor’s degree, those interested in actuarial careers will need to pass a series of actuarial exams, which require a firm background in math and business.

Starting Salary: $57,000 to $72,000

Median Salary: $97,000

How to Make It Happen

The first step towards pursuing an actuarial career is obtaining a bachelor’s degree, preferably with electives in statistics, finance, and communication. While working towards your degree, you might also consider pursuing internship experience to make yourself a more competitive candidate.

Actuaries have to pass the actuarial exams, and certain kinds of actuarial work require additional certifications. Though most people begin studying for the actuarial exams after graduation, it’s almost never too early to get started.

Likewise, for pursuing a career in claims, the first step is to complete your education. With your degree earned, you can start to think about which kind of claims position would most suit you.

It’s important to decide as early as you can because many states require you to complete an insurance licensing and course exam. Once you’ve earned your license, you’ll need to maintain it by continuing your education.

People with an accounting degree has a versatile skill set that can apply to quite a wide range of jobs. Outside of actuarial careers and working in claims, you might also want to learn about other types of insurance careers, or to learn more about exactly why working in insurance is a great career move.