The profound impact of pandemic on underwriting revealed


Authored by  CII

Global challenges, such as technological advances, climate change and Covid-19, have had a profound impact on the way insurance underwriters, according to Mandy Hunt, Chair of the Society of Underwriting Professionals.

Ms Hunt said: “The pandemic means we are now much more likely to be working remotely and transacting online. And, with more businesses and entrepreneurs wanting advice and services 24/7, we must think about how we evolve and adapt our skills and knowledge to best meet their needs moving forward.

“An important part of this is improving how we understand, manage, and use data, and how we translate it into language that our customers find helpful in shaping their own decisions.

“Another important factor is knowing how people want to access our services. More and more people want to be able to work from their phones. So, we must provide mobile-enabled services while, at the same time, ensuring the right levels of transparency.”

To help insurance underwriters overcome these challenges, the Society of Underwriting Professionals will produce webinars, articles and good practice guidance on these topics in 2022.

The Society will also consider the feedback received from underwriters through the Chartered Insurance Institute’s (CII) Shaping the future together consultation held in 2021.  This consultation sought members’ views on the skills and knowledge they need to thrive as well as how the qualification framework and learning provision could be made more user-friendly, accessible and capable of meeting the future learning needs of all insurance professionals.

The Society looks forward to working with the CII when it shares the consultation findings and how they will inform the group’s strategy for the next five years.

For the Society of Underwriting Professionals, helping the next generation of talent build the skills and knowledge they need to meet the changing needs of consumers is critical for the future success of the insurance profession.

Ms Hunt, who is Chief Underwriting Officer for RSA Commercial, said: “Where, previously, many of us were based in offices and so had more opportunity to learn by osmosis from those around us, now people learn in different ways.  Younger generations have been brought up to expect a constant feedback cycle, which many of us may not be used to.

“So, as a profession, we must think about what this means for the way we work going forward, including how we help people develop their careers by providing learning and knowledge in ways that suit them best.”

Gill White, Chief Customer Officer of the Chartered Insurance Institute, said: “We will engage with the Society of Underwriting Professionals to ensure we deliver world-class learning and qualifications that develop and recognise the practitioner of the future.”

“We are reviewing the feedback received through our Shaping the future together consultation with a view to creating the relevant learning, qualifications and assessments that help develop and enhance the professional knowledge, behaviours and enablers underwriters need to thrive.



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