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Career Definition for a Workers' Compensation Agent
Workers' compensation agents are insurance sales agents who specialize in medical and wage replacement policies, a key form of coverage for clients who may become injured or have an accident on the job. They may also sell general property and casualty policies that cover workers' compensation claims. The responsibilities of workers' comp agents include explaining the terms of insurance policies, obtaining price quotes, processing applications and writing reports. They may also help corporate clients reduce their premiums by recommending better hiring practices and improvements in their human resources departments.
|Education||High school diploma or equivalent required, bachelor's in business or economics preferred|
|Job Skills||Communication, basic computer knowledge, taking initiative, independent working|
|Median Salary (2015)*||$48,200 for insurance sales agents|
|Job Growth (2014-2024)*||9% for insurance sales agents|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
A high school diploma or its equivalent and a state license are the usual requirements for becoming an insurance sales agent. To obtain a license, aspiring agents must complete a series of pre-licensing courses and earn a passing score on an exam. Many potential employers prefer applicants with a bachelor's degree in business, economics or a closely related major. College-level courses in business administration, finance, economics and accounting can be helpful.
Workers' comp agents who are interested in building and maintaining a satisfied clientele must have strong interpersonal and communication skills. As much of their work now takes place online, basic computer skills are indispensable. The ability to take initiative and work under minimal supervision is also important. Fluency in a foreign language, such as Spanish, can be helpful in certain geographical locations.
Employment and Salary Outlook
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment opportunities for insurance sales agents, including workers' comp agents, are expected to grow by 9%, or faster than average, between 2014 and 2024. In May 2015, the median annual wage of an insurance sales agent was $48,200, as reported by the BLS.
Alternate Career Options
Listed below are some other career options in insurance and finance:
Insurance underwriters review insurance applications and use underwriting software to decide whether or not a prospective client should receive coverage and under what policy terms. Entry-level positions typically require a bachelor's degree and on-the-job training; professional certifications may also be necessary, especially for management and senior underwriters. The BLS reports that underwriters earned median yearly salaries of $65,040 in May 2015. Between 2014 and 2024, employment opportunities for underwriters are projected to decline by 11% nationwide, also according to the BLS.
Personal Financial Advisors
Personal financial advisors inform and assist clients who need help choosing insurance policies or investments and meeting their fiscal goals. A bachelor's degree in a relevant major may be enough to get started in the field; graduates of a master's degree program in business or finance may have more opportunities for advancement. As of May 2015, financial advisors enjoyed a median annual wage of $89,160. From 2014-2024, they can also look forward to a 30%, or much faster than average, growth in employment, according to the BLS.