Canada’s property and casualty (P&C) insurance industry is a growing sector that offers rewarding careers for qualified individuals. However, the path toward becoming qualified and further developing those qualifications isn’t offered in the mainstream post-secondary education system. This role is filled by the Chartered Insurance Professional (CIP) designation.
The CIP designation is a key part of preparing professionals for the P&C insurance industry in Canada and around the world. The designation is conferred by The Insurance Institute of Canada (IIC) upon applicants who successfully complete a designation program designed to provide the skills and knowledge required by employers in Canada’s P&C insurance industry.
The CIP Program bridges the general education provided in university or college, and the specific training offered by individual firms. It provides industry-specific knowledge, key concepts, and industry best practices. Individual firms then build on these concepts with their specific approaches to brokerage, underwriting, and adjusting.
The CIP Program and Consumers: Rigorous Courses and Committed Learners
The CIP Program is an industry innovation that helps to address many of the gaps in Canada’s post-secondary education system with respect to P&C industry-specific knowledge. The industry-accredited program is consistently applied across Canada, and employers widely trust its curriculum and pedagogy. It is also rigorous. Interviewees reported that some of the foundational courses are equivalent to college-level courses and some electives are equivalent to university-level courses. The rigour of the program is evident in the fact that it usually takes students several years to complete the CIP Program.
Interest in the program is high within the industry. Among P&C insurance professionals who have not already graduated from the program, 67 per cent are likely or extremely likely to take a CIP course in the next year.
The result of this high level of interest is that more than 17,000 people have graduated from the program since its inception, with about 900 more people graduating every year.1 There were 18,542 professionals enrolled in the program in 2014. In comparison, the Insurance Bureau of Canada estimates that there are 118,000 people employed in the P&C industry in Canada.2 This figure includes many other types of employees, such as those in administrative, information technology, accounting, and human resources positions, so it is reasonable to say that a significant share of the people working in occupations specific to the P&C industry take part in the program.
CIPs: Establishing Trust and Improving the P&C Experience
The survey results confirm what many interviewees expressed about the CIP Program: employers encourage P&C professionals to undertake the CIP Program in order to improve the quality of their work once they are already in the industry. By improving the quality of their work, they are improving the P&C industry as a whole, making it more trustworthy, more credible, and more knowledgeable. The CIP designation is ultimately about making the P&C insurance experience better for customers.
To learn more about the CIP designation and its role in the P&C insurance workplace, please visit the Insurance Institute of Canada at www.insuranceinstitute.ca/CIPvalue
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