How The Strong Inventory Relates to a Career as an Insurance Sales Agent
The Strong Interest Inventory (SII) is a widely used career assessment tool that helps individuals identify their career interests and match this with their pursuit of possible occupation and education. One of the six theme codes on the Strong Interest Inventory assessment is Enterprising Theme Code which describes individuals who are entrepreneurial, persuasive and driven to achieve success. Insurance sales agents fit in the Enterprising theme code as defined by the Strong Interest Inventory Assessment because they have the confidence and outgoing nature needed to succeed in their roles. They are responsible for selling insurance policies to customers and building client relationships. They must also be able to communicate complex information and negotiate favorable terms effectively.
What Does an Insurance Sales Agent Do?
An insurance sales agent may specialize in selling a particular type of insurance, such as life, health, home, and auto insurance, or they may focus on selling insurance to a specific demographic, such as small business owners or senior citizens. They may also specialize in a specific aspect of insurance sales, such as underwriting, which involves evaluating the risks associated with insurance policies, or claims adjusting, which involves handling customer claims and determining their validity. Some insurance sales agents may also specialize in selling financial products, such as mutual funds, annuities, and retirement planning products, in addition to insurance. They are responsible for creating their clientele and generating income through commissions. This requires a certain level of entrepreneurship and the ability to take the initiative. Insurance sales agents must be competent in persuading prospective clients to purchase insurance products. They must be able to explain the benefits of insurance and convince customers of its advantages. They are motivated to achieve financial success and meet sales goals and quotas. They need to be able to work independently and take the initiative to generate new business.
Insurance Sales Agent’s Day-to-Day Tasks and Tools
Insurance sales agent utilize different tools and technologies to carry out daily tasks. These may include computer software to manage client information and sales, as well as communication tools such as email, instant messaging, and video conferencing platforms to interact with clients and stay in touch with the office. They may also use customer relationship management systems to organize and prioritize their workload. The tools and technologies used may vary depending on the company and the agent’s duties. Some insurance sales agents also use marketing and sales software to help them reach new clients, manage leads, and track their progress.
As stated by The Dept’ of Labor, The Following Work Tasks are Most Often Completed by Insurance Sales Agents:
- Customize financial products or services to meet customer needs.
- Sell products or services.
- Explain financial information to customers.
- Maintain records of sales or other business transactions.
- Take product orders from customers.
- Develop professional relationships or networks.
- Identify potential customers.
- Gather customer or product information to determine customer needs.
- Prepare sales or other contracts.
- Examine documents to verify adherence to requirements.
(Retrieved from O’netOnline.org. Insurance Sales Agent Career. Career Code: 41-3021.00. Detailed Work Activities)
Core Activities for Insurance Sales Agents:
- Customize insurance programs to suit individual customers, often covering a variety of risks.
- Sell various insurance policies to businesses and individuals on behalf of insurance companies, including automobile, fire, life, property, medical and dental insurance, or specialized policies, such as marine, farm/crop, and medical malpractice.
- Explain the features, advantages, and disadvantages of various policies to promote the sale of insurance plans.
- Perform administrative tasks, such as maintaining records and handling policy renewals.
- Seek out new clients and develop clientele by networking to find new customers and generate lists of prospective clients.
- Call on policyholders to deliver and explain the policy, analyze the insurance program, and suggest additions or changes or change beneficiaries.
- Confer with clients to obtain and provide information when claims are made on a policy.
- Contact the underwriter and submit forms to obtain binder coverage.
- Ensure that policy requirements are fulfilled, including any necessary medical examinations and the completion of appropriate forms.
- Develop marketing strategies to compete with other individuals or companies who sell insurance.
(Retrieved from O’netOnline.org. Insurance Sales Agent Career. Career Code: 41-3021.00. Tasks- Category-Core.)
Insurance sales agents must have a range of technological skills and tools to market, sell, and manage insurance products effectively. The following are some essential tools and software that insurance sales professionals need to have:
- Customer relationship management (CRM) software
- Scheduling Software
- Cloud-Based Tools
- Document Management Systems
- Financial Analysis Software
- Medical Procedure Coding Software
- Video Creation and Editing Software
Experience and Education
To become an insurance sales agent, one must typically have a high school diploma or equivalent. To get started, they must pass state licensing exams that test their knowledge of insurance policies, regulations, and the laws that govern the industry.
In terms of specific training and education, a bachelor’s degree in business, finance, or a related field can be helpful, although it is not always a requirement. Insurance sales agents who work for brokerages may need additional training and certification, such as the Series 6 or Series 7 exams for securities licensing. They may also benefit from taking courses in areas such as ethics, customer service, and communication skills.
Many insurance companies offer training programs to help their agents enhance their skills, while professional organizations provide courses and seminars that agents can attend to further their education.
Salary and Wages
Based on the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage of Insurance Sales Agents is $49,840. The top 10% made at least $126,510 or more, while the bottom 10% made at least $29,970 or less. The median salary of an Insurance Sales Agent in states like New York and Massachusetts is $62,360 to $78,360 on average.
The salary for insurance sales agents can vary greatly depending on factors such as the type of insurance they sell, their employer, the region in which they work, and their level of experience and education. On average, insurance sales agents earn a median annual salary of around $50,000. Some insurance sales agents earn a base salary, while others work on a commission-based structure where they earn a percentage of the policies they sell. To increase their salary, insurance sales agents can focus on developing their sales skills, building a strong network of clients, and continuously expanding their knowledge of the insurance industry. They can also consider specializing in a particular type of insurance, such as life insurance or property insurance, which may offer higher commission rates.
Below are some employment trends for Insurance Sales Agents:
- Median Salary: $23.96 hourly, $49,840 annually
- Employment: 523,200 employees
- Projected growth (2021-2031): Average (4% to 7%)
- Projected job openings (2021-2031): 52,700
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- Bureau of Labor Statistics wage data and 2018-2028 employment projections Onetonline.org