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Top 5 Paying MBA Careers: Insurance

insurance career

Insurance is a fast-growing career field. In the next 12 months, 63 percent of insurance companies plan to increase their staff numbers, according to a recent industry trend report.

In fact, by 2020, almost 400,000 insurance jobs are projected to be available. When combining that with the fact that millennials aren’t very interested in working in insurance—only a third demonstrate any interest—it’s a great career field to consider.

There’s a wide range of jobs, across a broad spectrum of career paths, within the insurance industry, and compensation is higher than average. Entry-level professionals can expect to earn more than $50,000 a year, and that number only increases as you gain experience.

In this article, we’re breaking down the highest paid insurance jobs, the companies where you’ll earn the most money, the top MBA programs, and where you should live.

Companies Recruiting in Insurance

Where you work can have a large impact on how much you earn in the insurance industry. The larger the company and more well known, the more money you can make. The following are the top five insurance firms as well as their actuary base salary according to Glassdoor.

  • Liberty Mutual Insurance: $156,00 – $179,000
  • Met Life: $134,730
  • AIG: $129,363
  • USAA: $126,000 – $136,000
  • Allianz: $120,000 – $167,000

Insurance Career Salaries by Experience and Location

For the sake of dissecting salaries by location and experience, we’ll look at the top-paying career of an actuary, according to PayScale.

Experience and salary:

  • Entry Level: $59,830
  • Mid-Career: $104,244
  • Experienced: $120,730
  • Late Career: $147,054

Location also matters. The east coast, in general, pays actuaries the most. Top earners live in Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania. Surprisingly, Minnesota is also a good place to be. However, you should avoid Chicago, Illinois, and Atlanta, GA.

  • Hartford, CT: Earn 20 perent more
  • NYC, NY: Earn 15 percent more
  • Paul, MN: Earn 14 percent more
  • Boston, MA: Earn 5 percent more
  • Philadelphia, PA: Earn 2 percent more

Top 5 MBA Programs for an Insurance Career

So, where should you go to school if you want to land a top-paying insurance job? There are a few B-schools that stand out based on some highly-rated undergraduate insurance programs. According to the U.S. News & World Report, these are the top B-schools for insurance.

Image result for terry college of business

U.S. News & World Report regards the Terry College of Business at the University of Georgia as the best business school in the country to pursue an insurance career.

5 Highest Paid Insurance Careers

While there are many different types of insurance jobs that an MBA graduate is qualified for, the positions below are the highest paying in the industry, according to Salary.com.

1.) Actuary — $161,759

After gaining eight years of experience, an actuary can expect to earn as much as $330,890 a year. As an actuary, you’ll assess future risks by gathering and analyzing data to estimate the probability and cost of certain events—death, illness, injury, disability, or loss of property. This role is essential to the insurance industry, responsible for designing insurance policies and coming up with financial strategies, including investments.

However, it’s important to note than an actuary has quite a bit of education after a bachelors and even an MBA. To become a fully-certified actuary at the fellowship level, you’ll need to complete nine actuarial science exams. The first six exams generally take four to six years to complete, at which time you’ll gain associate status. After that, you’ll need to take another three exams over the next two to three years to gain fellowship level.

An entry-level actuary (actuary 1) can expect to earn $69,431 a year on average. An actuarial fellow who has completed all tests can expect a base salary of $161,759 while leaders earn $330,980.

2.) Insurance Claims Adjusters — $114,976

A chief claims executive can expect to earn an average base salary of $249,900. This is a claims adjuster who is at the top of their field. They are responsible for managing and implementing all claims programs for all lines of insurance. They develop policies and procedures to improve claims processing, investigation, and settlement and are responsible for level examinations.

As a claims adjuster, you’ll be responsible for strategic processing and payment of claims while keeping abreast of regulations and legislation in regards to insurance claims. You’ll be in charge of functional strategies, developing budgets and policies, and overall supporting the operational infrastructure.

An entry-level claims adjuster can expect to earn around $45,817 a year. A claims director with an MBA, on the other hand, can expect to earn around $141,976 and leaders earn $249,900.


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3.) Insurance Underwriter — $108,957

A top underwriting executive can expect to earn around $257,925 a year. This individual is responsible for overseeing all aspects of an organization’s underwriting functions. They develop procedures, deploy new practices, and direct the entire underwriting department. As an underwriter, you’ll provide credit decisions as well as recommendation for complex cases. You’ll also review risk management plans and procedures, and deal with applications and renewals, acceptance, and rejections.

You’ll be expected to have a deep understanding of risk, insurance policy coverage, and financial responsibility. Ultimately, an underwriter is the individual who decides if a company should gamble on providing insurance.

An underwriting associate is an entry-level position that has an average base salary of $50,601. As a manager with an MBA, you can expect to earn around $108,957 as your base while leaders earn $257,925.

4.) Risk Analyst — $104,421

A risk modeling manager oversees strategic business analysis modeling. They are involved in an organization’s credit management function, developing and evaluating systems involved in controlling risk. They determine policies and strategies to maximize asset growth and profits while minimizing lost and risk exposure.

As a risk management analyst, your job will be to protect your organization’s assets. You’ll forecast potential losses, determine solutions to eliminate risk, and monitor and report on controls. You’ll also work on risk model construction and handle complex analysis.

An entry-level risk management analyst can expect a base salary of $77,806. An experienced risk analyst with an MBA can expect to earn a base salary of $104,421, while leaders expect to earn $160,370.

5.) Financial Analyst — $103,204

A financial analyst is responsible for preparing, coordinating, and documenting financial analysis of projects. They look into the future of financial and business decisions, providing the necessary analytical support to make solid decisions. They’ll prepare forecasts, analyze trends, and reconcile internal accounts.

As a financial analyst, you’ll need to be skilled in both finance and accounting. You’ll be expected to analyze and interpret financial statements, market trends, and microeconomic conditions. You’ll also be expected to aggregate and interpret complex data to solve industry challenges.

As an entry-level financial analyst, you can expect a base salary of $57,292. A senior financial analyst with an MBA, can expect to earn around $103,205 as a base salary while leaders earn $373,090 as top financial executives. 

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About the Author


Kelly Vo    

Kelly Vo is a writer who specializes in covering MBA programs, digital marketing, and personal development.

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