A Day in the Life of a Small Commercial Underwriting Intern

This past summer I worked as a Small Commercial Underwriting Intern at The Hartford. My first day was an orientation for all of the 100+ interns in all different areas (Claims, Finance, IT, Operations, etc.) with tours of the buildings and an introduction of what working at The Hartford is really like.

My first 2 weeks consisted of an intensive virtual class on underwriting directed at Workers’ Compensation (insurance that employers must provide for their employees). We attended this class with the other small commercial underwriting interns located in other offices around the country to give us all an understanding of how to evaluate risks properly. Once the class concluded we were each assigned a mentor to answer all of our questions and guide us through the policy evaluation process.

Although no days were exactly the same, a typical day would consist of Skyping with the other interns to work on our capstone project, attending meetings, reviewing risks and completing risk evaluation documents (REDs), making decisions whether to write the business or not. In the role, I almost felt like a detective trying to uncover all of the information I could about a company that wanted insurance from us. The more we uncover the more informed our decision is whether or not we should insure them. Every type of business is different and has its own unique risk factors, and our job was to find them and assess the risk as a whole.

All interns are assigned a capstone project to work on over the course of the summer, not only to learn group work and time management but to become more comfortable with giving professional presentations. Our capstone project was focused on an issue small commercial underwriters were facing; reviewing why a certain segment of our books was being less profitable than others and suggesting possible solutions to the issue. Over the course of 8 weeks, our team collected data from hundreds of policies and analyzed the inconsistencies. We then reached out to people within the organization asking questions to better understand the current practices. We finally concocted and proposed different solutions that could minimize the issue. At the end of the summer, we compiled all of our work into a presentation that we presented to our managers and other underwriters in the offices.

Throughout the summer our manager would set up side by side with employees in different departments (claims, operations, sales) so we were able to experience and understand the full process of how insurance works. This internship was an eye-opening experience that taught me about not only underwriting but the insurance industry as a whole. Several months after the completion of my internship I was offered a full-time position at The Hartford and I accepted! My internship in Small Commercial Underwriting helped me gain the skills necessary to succeed as a business professional.

By Selah Ford
Selah Ford Selah Ford