How to become a Insurance Agent

Insurance agents represent insurance companies and sell insurance to clients, including individuals and organisations.

Personal requirements of a Insurance Agent

  • Good communication skills
  • Good interpersonal skills
  • Perseverance and motivation
  • Aptitude for working with figures
  • Confidence in selling products
  • Neat personal appearance

Education & Training for a Insurance Agent

You can work as an insurance agent without formal qualifications, but most employers usually require you to gain your Senior Secondary Certificate of Education. You will probably get some informal training on the job. Entry to this occupation may be improved if you have qualifications. You may like to consider a VET qualification in general insurance or financial services. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information. You can also become an insurance agent through a traineeship in Financial Services or General Insurance. Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10. For more details, see Section 2. Ask your career adviser about the possibility of starting some of this training in school.

Duties & Tasks of a Insurance Agent

Insurance agents may perform the following tasks:

  • draw up lists of clients from a variety of sources
  • contact potential clients, usually by telephone, to arrange interviews
  • research new insurance products to assist current and potential clients in making choices
  • interview clients to identify their insurance needs and how insurance policies might meet those needs
  • write an insurance recommendation list or plan to assist the client to make an informed decision
  • explain policy details to clients, including the risks for which they are covered, the rates and the benefits
  • recommend an appropriate amount and type of cover to individual clients
  • collect premiums and keep records of payments
  • regularly review clients’ circumstances to ensure the level of insurance is appropriate
  • assist clients in the event of a claim
  • negotiate with insurance companies on behalf of clients.

Working conditions for a Insurance Agent

Some insurance agents are also licensed financial planners and/or investment advisers.

Employment Opportunities for a Insurance Agent

Insurance agents usually represent a particular insurance company. They may work in either city or country areas. Most insurance agents work on a commission basis, with the level of business dependent upon the level of general economic activity. However, earnings and continued employment in this occupation depend on both ability and experience.

Additional Information
The insurance industry is regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). Depending on the services that an insurance agent provides, they may need to be registered with ASIC or required to hold an Australian Financial Services (AFS) licence. You can only provide financial advice to clients if you hold the appropriate qualifications. Details can be found at the ASIC website (www.asic.gov.au).
Related careers