Welcome once again to yet another insightful and informative article on choosing a career path within the insurance industry.
Today, we will talk about health insurance agent jobs.
At the end of this article, we will have understood in detail how you can carve a niche for yourself as a health insurance agent.
You will also find out what you need to do in order to make this important career decision happen.
Specifically, here are some of the questions that we will answer:
Sit back and watch as we take you on a ride!
Who is a health insurance agent?
A health insurance agent is also known as a health insurance broker; their job is to help people or businesses find the right health insurance plan.
This way, individuals and businesses do not need to spend time and money looking for the best health plan because an agent has taken care of that for them.
The entire health insurance process, from searching through several insurance agencies to finalizing the plan, is handled by the agent.
Although many people love to search for health care insurance plans on their own, it is not always easy choosing the right plan.
The process of buying or signing up for a health plan can also be cumbersome.
A licensed health insurance agent makes sure their clients get the best health insurance plan.
He does this by sifting through available options and choosing the best of them after considering various factors like the package, number of beneficiaries, current health needs, budget, among other factors.
Health insurance agents usually have contract agreements with several insurance companies.
That is the reason why they are in a better position to recommend the right insurance plan to people.
As a health insurance agent, you are expected to provide the following services to your clients in addition to helping them choose the right health plan for them.
- Quick feedback to queries and questions: From time to time, clients might need some clarifications done to explain the details of a particular concept.
They don’t always have to write an email to ask the health insurance agent directly for the answer.
As a health insurance agent, you must be well-equipped to answer their questions.
- Special, in-depth knowledge of insurance plans: When marketing a specific health insurance plan, your job as a health insurance agent is to be honest about the plan and how it will benefit your client.
Without an in-depth knowledge of the company’s health insurance plan, you as the agent may just have to sugar-coat your utterances instead of being open and honest.
- Recommendations in case you need a better health insurance plan: If you are chosen to be an insurance health agent, you are expected to have at your disposal information about health plans from several companies.
You will need this information when a client intends to change their health insurance provider because of some personal reasons.
They must be able to count on you for the best recommendations.
Pros and Cons of working as a health insurance agent
Life as a health insurance agent is surely not an easy life. Just as each job has its peculiar challenges, so does being an insurance agent.
In this section, let’s take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of this career path.
- Opportunity to make as much income as possible from multiple sources. On the average, insurance agents make about $60,000 annually
- The benefits that come from working with a flexible work schedule. If you like, you don’t have to work on weekends and special holidays
- You can also bask in the euphoria of going on a vacation whenever you want to
- Insurance agents have the luxury of constant work because at the moment, there are tons of job ads with searches for health insurance agents
- Opportunity to diversify and sell several types of insurance like health insurance, automobile insurance, real estate insurance, and so on
- The work schedule allows for a good balance between secular and social life. You have a good control of your time and how you spend it, especially if you are an independent health insurance agent
- There is an allowance for working remotely or from home
- Opportunity to contribute to the lives of your clients by recommending great ideas as well as helping them make sound decisions
- If you work with a healthcare organization, positive feedback from clients can galvanize job promotion, which in most cases means a better office, pay, and reputation
- You must meet certain certification requirements in order to land good jobs
- You may be pressured to market products and services that you are not sure of their credibility to clients and they will have high expectation from you
- The job of an insurance agent can be emotionally and mentally tasking
- Advancement in technology means people may no longer need insurance advice from health insurance agents in the future
- A simple bad recommendation that do not go well with the client might expose you to unnecessary lawsuits
- There is always a target you must meet to keep your clients and sometimes, your job
- You will most likely have little to no knowledge of the insurance products and services
Both paths lead to success, all you have to do is decide which of them you would like to do.
To do this, you should carefully consider the advantages and disadvantages of each path, and based on what you would love to do, carve out a niche for yourself.
Which is Right for me: Independent or Captive Agent?
An independent health insurance agent is a freelance insurance agent who is not a full-time employee of any particular insurance company.
Instead of being employed by a particular healthcare provider, he represents more than one healthcare institution, offering their clients several health options with different policies, prices, and terms.
A captive insurance agent, on the other hand, is an insurance agent that has been employed by a health insurance provider or company.
He is the licensed insurance salesperson for a healthcare provider who sells their health insurance plans to clients.
He is entitled to a monthly salary as well as bonuses and other commissions.
As he helps the health institution he works for to get more customers, his reputation grows, his work rating improves, and he may be promoted.
Having decided that this career path is the next move for you, you must make yet another decision.
The decision is to either work as an independent health insurance agent or work as a captive health insurance agent.
For some, the choice is a hard one to make because both have peculiar perks and downsides.
But after considering the peculiar advantages of each type of health insurance agency, we are confident that you will conveniently choose which route to take.
Why you should consider becoming an independent health insurance agent
- Making money from several healthcare institutions at the same time
- Ability to retain the best clients because of having provided really helpful health insurance ideas
- Opportunity to consistently offer real help to customers
- You enjoy a rather flexible work schedule because you are not fully employed by any institution
- Obtaining awesome feedbacks from clients increases your prospects of getting more jobs
- Commissions can boost your personal savings for the future
- You only have little or no knowledge of the health insurance plans you are marketing because you are not involved in its planning process
- You have very little to say about the health plans when questioned by clients
- You have very little support from the healthcare provider in terms of adverts, promotions, and campaigns
Having examined the benefits and downsides of working as an independent health insurance agent, we will now consider the other option: a career as a captive health insurance agent.
Why you should consider becoming a captive health insurance agent
You have a stable source of income guaranteed because you are employed and will receive a monthly salary like every other person in the health institution.
Because you are an employee, you can get enough assistance from the company when marketing insurance policies and ideas.
This assistance may be paid for promotions sponsored by the healthcare provider.
Because you are employed by the healthcare provider that is rolling out the plan, you have a better understanding of what the plan is all about and how it will benefit your clients.
You also have direct and actionable answers to their questions and queries because you have a good knowledge of the health plan.
One major challenge that is facing captive health insurance agents globally is the pressure to meet certain sales quotas that their company sets for them.
Their continued employment depends on meeting up these targets.
The target could be to bring in a specified number of clients within a stipulated time.
As a result of this, even if they know that their company’s healthcare plan isn’t as great as it sounds, they will be forced to still market it to clients.
This is because they have to do that in order to keep their jobs.
They also find it hard to retain customers.
When clients become aware of a counteroffer by another healthcare provider, they switch easily and leave behind the agent who had marketed their previous plan to them.
What Does It Take To Become a Licensed Health Insurance Agent?
If you are considering a career as a health insurance agent, understand that years of experience alone are not enough.
You must be certified or licensed in order to land good jobs.
To get licensed as a professional health insurance agent, follow these steps:
- You must have had high school school diploma
- To increase your chances, you need to apply for and obtain a degree certificate. It could be an associate or bachelor’s degree
- Complete your state’s pre-licensing education requirement. Florida and Carlifonia for instance require that license applicants must have completed some 20-hours of pre-licensing education
- Write the insurance licensing exam
- In passing the exam, start applying for jobs at health insurance agencies
An experience in business and finance is considered a strength for prospective health insurance agents.
How can I find Licensed Health Insurance Agent jobs?
Having qualified and licensed as an insurance agent within the healthcare sector, the next thing is to search for a job.
Back in the day, job searches were done by physically visiting offices and submitting CVs.
Technology has made that entire process a lot easier.
Every day, thousands of health insurance agent jobs are posted online. A simple internet search can help you find the right place to search for such jobs.
However, here are some websites where you can readily find job posts about health insurance agent jobs.
Are you already thinking of starting a career as a health insurance agent? That is fine!
However, you need to first understand what is required of you in order to get licensed and what you need to do for your clients.
It is never too late to change careers because all you need to get started is just a high school diploma.
In addition to that, you must also get certified as a professional health insurance agent.
While insurance agents get paid well, the profession does come with some challenges.
However, with the right attitude, you will find that eventually, it will be worth your while.
We hope you have been motivated enough to take up this new challenge and succeed as a licensed health insurance agent.