Laura Scarpa ACII, Deloitte
Economics degree | Graduate Scheme | Corporate Finance Insurance Practice Manager I Senior Manager - Insurance Consulting
What were you doing before this role?
I was a reinsurance broker at Benfield (now Aon Benfield).
What do you do in a typical working day?
My work is project-based so no two days are ever the same! Most of the deliverables we produce are reports or workshop packs but obtaining the data to fill out the slides comes from a variety of sources and activities. Working on a due diligence of an insurer or broker tends to be relatively intense and require good research skills, good report writing and an ability to deal well with clients. I also work on large-scale strategy projects for insurers and brokers. These projects have a number of elements – researching market trends and opportunities, interviewing key stakeholders to understand the capabilities within the business and understanding how the business got to where it is and bringing these together to get a big picture view of business and its potential opportunities. We tend to facilitate these projects with board-level workshops where we present our findings and discuss recommendations so it is critical to get up to speed to feel confident to take on the challenging questions. I also typically manage a team of people so part of the day is spent reviewing content for the deliverables we produce.
How does your role fit into the wider risk picture?
We deal with risks all the time, be they managing internal project risks such as conflicts of interest, or on a strategy or due diligence assignment, looking at risks for the buyer/seller of buying a specific business and the potential upside or downside that the insurance market may add to the mix and the business' future projections.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
The variety of work - no project or day is ever the same. I also get to meet a number of senior people across the insurance industry which is both interesting and hopefully useful for my career.
What is the most challenging part of your role?
Having to adapt quickly to learn about new areas of the market and feel confident in discussing them intelligently with clients.
What do you need to be successful in your role?
Good communication skills are critical to being able to deal with clients effectively and produce outputs which answer their key business questions. A good handle of PowerPoint and Excel is also a must!
Have you taken any professional qualifications?
While in my previous role I became ACII qualified but the information I learned then is still useful. I keep this up-to-date with regular CPD activities.
What have been your career highlights so far?
Working on high-profile deals which end up on the front pages of the Business section of the newspapers!
What are the main benefits of working in the profession?
Insurance will always be needed so there is a job for life! The people I have come across live and breathe the industry so there is a lot of passion and knowledge around. Also it is a global industry which provides opportunities to travel.
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