Ryan Legge Cert CII, Hayes Parsons
A levels I Apprenticeship I Commercial Account Handler
What do you do in a typical working day?
I service a bank of clients which can range from commercial to educational and marine-related risks. This means dealing with the renewal process, negotiating with insurers on a range of topics and assisting our clients with any queries.
What were you doing before this role?
I’ve been a Commercial Account Handler for three years, dealing with bigger and more complex risks throughout that time. Before that, I was studying for my A levels.
How has the Apprenticeship helped you?
I’ve gained a lot of confidence and have definitely improved my people skills. I’ll happily pick up the phone and talk to anybody, whereas when I first started I was always a bit apprehensive in doing so. I’ve also learned a lot, not just about insurance-related topics, but also the wider economy.
How has the Apprenticeship helped your company?
It’s helped in many ways. In the early stages of my development I was able to assist a lot of my colleagues and shadow them, which helped reduce their workloads. Since then, and as I’ve progressed, I’ve hopefully been able to contribute a positive and refreshing attitude, whilst taking on other responsibilities in the company. We’ve also taken on apprentices since, so I’ve been a go-to person for them.
How does your role fit into the business?
My role naturally fits into the business as one of the main Account Handlers, who provide the day-to-day support for our Executives. When I first started, under guidance I looked after our Small Business Unit, which consisted of risks that acquired premiums of generally anything below £5k.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
Learning new things every day and being in a profession where it’s easy to meet new people. At Hayes Parsons, internal progression is greatly encouraged, and that’s something which I find really motivating. It makes it an enjoyable environment to work in.
What is the most challenging part of your role?
No two risks or individuals that you’ll deal with are ever the same, so having to adapt to each and every situation that you find yourself in is quite a challenging but interesting aspect of the role.
What do you need to be successful in your role?
The main qualities would be hard-working, the ability to take advice/information fully on board and to be a good communicator.
Have you taken any professional qualifications?
Yes, I’ve completed my CII Certificate in Insurance. Once I have completed my CII Diploma in Insurance I’ll progress to the CII Advanced Diploma, which is the same level as a degree.
What have been your career highlights so far?
Alongside my Account Handling role I also work as a New Business Executive, mainly just out of hours so that I can gain experience first-hand in this role whilst I’m still progressing in my early years. One of my highlights was picking up my first big risk just under a couple of years into my career.
Other than that, I won the Bristol Young Achiever and National Young Broker of the Year awards, both in 2015. External recognition like this are obvious highlights!
What are the main benefits of working in risk?
There’s a lot of scope to progress as it’s a very career-orientated profession. You get to meet a lot of people, and it’s a booming sector so there’s no shortage of opportunities.
What do you think you will be doing this time next year?
Hopefully still progressing in my current role and nearer to becoming a full-time New Business Executive.
Why did you choose a career in insurance?
I recognised it was a profession which encouraged progression and plenty of career opportunities were available. In addition, you’re learning new things all the time, and there’s a wide variety of things that you can come across.
What would you say to someone at school or college who isn’t sure about their next step?
Fully consider all of your options, talk to many different people, and do a lot of independent research as opposed to just discussing things with your sixth form/college tutors. A lot of people have been to university, so their advice may be slightly biased in that respect. Opportunities exist whatever route you take, my final comment would be to make a fully-informed decision, stick to it and give it your all.
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