Congratulations, you have decided to further your education in order to prepare for a better job and a more rewarding career. The rapid change in technology has made it more important to prepare for a job of the future rather than a job of the past. 360training, MyCAA and Meditec can be your educational partners to make sure you are headed in the right direction. College is expensive and a traditional campus is not the best choice for everyone. An important first step for a learner is to decide which mode of learning works for him or her. The College Board, in a recent report, states that a moderate college budget for an in-state public college in 2013-2014 averaged $22,826 per year and a moderate budget at a private college averages $44,750. This is $91,304 for a public school and $179,000 for a private school. For many learners with family and job responsibilities, completing course work online saves time and money. Just as tuition for a traditional campus can vary from school to school, costs for online programs can also vary. The learner should look for recognized programs that are properly certified or accredited. When total expenses are factored in, such as travel, room and board, etc., an online program may represent sizeable savings over campus programs and allow those with families, flexible learning opportunities. Claims Adjusting is an example of how a student can prepare for a job of the future rather than a job of the past. The insurance industry increasingly has become a more desirable field because of strong job demand and well-paying jobs with benefits and opportunities for advancement. The role of a claims adjuster is one of the most critical in the insurance delivery system.
The adjuster has considerable control over the speed and settlement of claims. Getting claims paid or completed is the primary reason people buy insurance. There are close to 300,000 licensed claims adjusters in the U.S. and several times the number who work in the claims divisions of agencies, brokers and insurance companies are not licensed. Traditionally, a beginning adjuster would apply to an insurance company or insurance broker and would begin an apprentice program that would involve climbing ladders, visiting body shops, working with contractors and filling out reams of paperwork. Gradually the new hire would learn the basic adjusting skills and begin working their way up the ladder. Catastrophic events such as hurricanes, tornadoes, hail storms and the like, has always been an opportunity for an adjuster to add new dimensions to their adjusting skills. These events might involve hundreds of claims done under stressful situations and making fast decisions involving millions of dollars. The overtime and extra pay from storm duty could be very rewarding.
Today, many adjusters are still trained in this model and they earn a good living. But a new era of claims adjusting is already upon us. The adjuster job of the future will still require many of these same skill sets plus many others. The training for new adjusters is faster, more technical and deeper than ever before. Much of this change is technology driven, especially by the internet, computers and social media. Adjusters today are getting photos from the claimant via cell phone and the customers are completing their loss reports via phone apps. New consumer protection laws on the Federal and State basis have put in place procedures that are dictating the type of information that must be provided to a claimant (person filing a claim) and time limits to respond and settle the loss. In addition, claim fraud by people trying to scam the insurance companies is at an all-time high and the crooks are smarter and better equipped than ever before. The Coalition Against Insurance Fraud estimates that up to 15% of all payments on auto insurance are fraudulent, especially the soft tissue injuries.
Dishonest drivers who misrepresent the number of miles driven impact at least 10% of the total policies written and staged auto accidents cost hundreds of millions of dollars in dishonest claims. One in five Americans thinks it is okay to defraud insurance companies under certain circumstances. The list goes on and illustrates the need for the front line adjuster to be aware of these details, serve the honest customer and help detect and stop fraud. Examples of training that help prepare a claims adjuster for the future instead of the past can be found on the Meditec website. In summary, a learner today has more options for establishing themselves in a profession other that attending a typical brick and mortar institution. By carefully looking at trends and business directions, a prudent person will position themselves for a job of the future, not a job of the past. For example, a claims adjuster preparing for a job of the future has a much better chance of success by establishing a firm foundation of insurance knowledge then go beyond what many adjusters do by specializing in business skills, communication skills and technology skills, including social media. Meditec, MyCAA and 360training are your educational partners and can help you find a success by keeping you on top of your game.