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CNO Financial Group VP Underwriting in Chicago, Illinois

This top underwriting executive directs and oversees all aspects of CNO's underwriting function. This position is responsible for strategic and tactical leadership of all matters of underwriting for individual and group life insurance, Medical Supplement, supplemental health and long term care products sold in our Consumer and Worksite divisions. This position coordinates underwriting work between home office and the business segments and is highly influential as it relates to organizational impact. Key responsibilities include defining the future state of underwriting and overseeing the execution of a roadmap to get there; recommending business plans that will generate continued profitable business growth in current and future markets;, and reviewing and analyzing new insurance applications for risk exposure and compliance with underwriting guidelines in support of an efficient and financially sound underwriting organization. Provides thought leadership in underwriting, including the use of data and technology, advances in healthcare and underlying medical exposures, and integration of core process management methodologies. Job requires an organized, fast pace skill set, with flexibility to respond to unexpected issues and assignments. The underwriting responsibility includes direct oversight of production, quality control, technical underwriting and underwriting methodology and oversees the development of the company's underwriting systems. The role provides leadership development and continuing education resources to more than 40 Underwriters at any given time.

Key Job Responsibilities and Accountabilities:

  1. Thought leadership in underwriting including the use of data and technology, underlying medical exposures and integration of core process management technologies.

  2. Sets proper tone and standard of outstanding interpersonal, communication and critical thinking skills in all business relations at a senior executive level and below.

  3. Ensure the appropriate people strategy is in place to recruit, retain, train & develop staff effectively

  4. Manages and supervises all technical matters related to underwriting operations, ensuring proper, professional and quality work output.

  5. Reviews, establishes and corrects, where necessary, all processes and procedures related to technical and administrative matters and workflows, ensuring high levels of productivity in underwriting.

  6. Reviews risks of a highly technical nature which may exceed responsible staff authority levels and provide counsel and appropriate decisions.

  7. Monitors underwriting and new business activities through sound data analytics/reporting to ensure proficiency in documentation, as well as prompt and effective response to business partners.

  8. Coordinates department activities with other support units or departments including Claims, Compliance, Actuarial, Sales/Marketing, etc. 

  9. Deep expertise across a variety of risk, insurance and reinsurance products/services including a broad range of underwriting techniques and methods

  10. Ensure compliance with relevant internal and external standards (i. e. underwriting guidelines, regulatory requirements, reinsurer guidelines), and develop policies and practices to achieve compliance

  11. Maintain high levels of internal and external client contact to generate growth opportunities in collaboration with program managers and individual underwriters; attend association meetings, trade shows and conventions as necessary.

  12. Build strong partnerships with stakeholders across the business unit in order to improve collaboration, identify opportunities to improve services, manage risk and ensure client satisfaction

  13. Lead, inspire, motivate and develop a large, diverse team of underwriting professionals to maximize their performance, productivity and enhance the client experience; Shares knowledge and develops leaders for depth of expertise across the underwriting team..

  14. Fosters the highest level of commitment among staff through transparent communication regarding business challenges, successes and results.

  15. Creates an environment that encourages people to make recommendations openly, speak freely, take action and make work decisions autonomously to achieve clearly defined goals.

Skills, Knowledge, and Abilities:

  1. Strong people leadership skills to foster a culture of trust, leadership and continued education

  2. Ability to create and drive analysis and development of underwriting philosophy.

  3. Ability to deal with stress along with a high level of activity and demands. Constant demands and interruptions, as well as keeping abreast of changes in multiple program guidelines and regulations, may cause a high level of stress

  4. Quick judgment and decision-making skills required

  5. Limited direct supervision received; position requires a self-motivated person able to work independently

  6. Strong communication skills and ability to influence senior leaders

Education and Experience:

  1. Bachelor’s degree required

  2. 10 + Years of relevant experience required

  3. Master’s degree preferred

  4. FLMI or FALU designation preferred