If cars have always sparked your interest, but becoming an auto mechanic or auto technician has never appealed to you, then becoming an insurance company estimator may be the career option to get you into the automotive industry without having to get your hands dirty!
The first question you’re most likely wondering is how do I reach that point? With that question in mind we’ll be taking a look at the specific career path to working as an Insurance Company Estimator.
What does an Insurance Company Estimator Do?
Generally the Insurance Company Estimator is the individual who looks over insurance claims once an accident has occurred. This typically means checking for fraudulent claims, as well as looking over the vehicle to assess damage and salvage value by calculating the cost of labour and the parts that it will take to fix it. Responsibilities of this role also include filling out insurance forms for claims and authorizing payments that need to be paid for damages and repairs, or the amount of a potential settlement if the vehicle is beyond repair.
What Type of Education Do I Need?
Most insurance company estimators will need some type of formal education and many complete a 2 year vocational program or associates degree, along with additional certification to become more specialized. However there are shorter programs that exist. If you have had training in other roles within the automotive industry, such as car sales training, then you may find it more valuable to have a shorter amount of training. Once you start working in the field it is likely that you’ll need continual training to stay up to date on repair industry standards and insurance company regulations. If you are just starting your career rather than making a career switch, then you can also complement your in-class education with an internship where you will learn in-the-field skills that will prepare you for the career that you are about to take on.
Is This The Right Career for Me?
The trick is finding out if you have the right combination of skills and aptitude for the industry that you would like to work in. Within the field of insurance company estimation, the skills that have proven to be the most beneficial are communication, analytical abilities and math skills. Conflict resolution and car inspection skills are important, as well as the ability to do damage assessments and estimation. Lastly, strong writing skills for completing reports and negotiation skills to settle claims are also equally important.
To get your foot in the door you may find it beneficial to spend some time working in the insurance industry to get a better understanding of the field. This additional training may also make your skills a lot more marketable, depending on your career background. If you’re making a career switch, then you may not see the value. However if you’re just starting out in your first “real” career job, then you may find those extra skills and experience beneficial.
At the end of the day taking the time decide the best career path for your skill set and aptitude is never a bad thing. As Confucius once said, choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.