Underwriting assistant jobs can vary depending on the industry and company. Underwriters are responsible for determining the amount of premium based on risk for policyholders. There is a multitude of information associated with the rates charged, and underwriting assistants work with underwriters to make sure the process is done smoothly and efficiently. Underwriting assistant jobs are important, because these are the people who gather and relay to the underwriters the necessary information regarding policy and pricing changes.
Underwriter assistant jobs may be found within insurance companies, such as life and health or property and casualty insurance. Underwriting assistant jobs may also be found in other types of financial institutions, such as banks and loan companies. Any company that needs to calculate risk to determine if it will grant coverage or a loan will need underwriters to do the calculating. With the large number of requests that flow in and out of these institutions, it is essential that underwriters have support from assistants to keep the flow organized and timely.
Underwriting assistants have a variety of daily tasks, including clerical work, reviewing applications, speaking with people inquiring about a policy change, gathering information, and any other tasks the underwriter may request of them. The assistants are often the first point of contact for those with any business with the underwriters. This position requires strong interpersonal skills, because the assistant will come in contact with multiple people throughout the course of a day, both in person and on the telephone. As the assistants grow professionally, more tasks will be assigned to them and larger decisions will need to be made by them.
Many companies will require at least a bachelor's degree in a relevant field for underwriting assistant jobs; with enough related experience, however, others may be welcome to apply for the positions. Even though much of the work is now done with computer software and other forms of technology, strong mathematical skills are advantageous for underwriters and assistants alike. Many underwriting assistant jobs lead to actual underwriter positions. Once in a position, additional certifications are often required to keep the staff up to date on current trends.
Underwriting assistants work an average 40-hours-a-week schedule, usually Monday through Friday. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, underwriting assistants in 2008 earned an average of $35,010 annually. Many companies also offer additional benefits to underwriting assistants, such as health insurance plans, paid vacation and retirement plans.