Insurance 2018 H1

Insurance Market Insights H1 2018

Published on 5th January 2018

The insurance industry has been going through a period of big change and turbulence in 2017. The industry's job market for the first half of 2018 is expected to be buoyant, as many insurers have pipelined their talent within focus growth areas.

Digital insurance has been on the rise

Digital insurance has been rapidly growing, and the utilization of insurtech and ability to be nimble in what has historically been a reactive industry has given start-ups an advantage in the market. Global insurers, too, have been investing heavily in digital technologies, with the emergence of technology-focused labs and partnerships.

Automation for efficiency

In 2017, ‘mainstream’ underwriting and claims opportunities have been limited, as firms continued to automate their processes as much as possible to maximise efficiency.

The trend has been to seek professionals with a good understanding of the processes but with an expertise in business change. Still, underwriters who could bring value and relationships to a business, especially within niche and robust areas, were still highly sought after.

Customer centricity is key

In a highly competitive market, customer centricity has become key. Data analytics has been a focus as insurers looked to improve customer experience. In 2017, change and transformation professionals have been sought after in all areas including specialists in product launches, payments and finance.

Acute shortage of actuarial talent

In the insurance job market, there remained a shortage of qualified actuaries, especially Singaporean actuaries. Those with specialised expertise in risk or pricing have been particularly in demand throughout 2017.

Insurance talent outlook for the first half of 2018

As insurers ramp up their change programs and continue to develop their digital capability, technology and change hires will displace the more traditional hires.

Of course, there will still be niche areas where expertise, market knowledge and industry relationships will also be a key factor. These areas, to name a few, include actuarial, underwriting (to a certain extent), business development and partnerships.

Governance is still key and the demand for compliance, risk and audit professionals will continue.

Contracting has already become more commonplace, especially for large transformation projects, and we expect this to become a growing feature of the insurance job market.

During the first half of 2018, with the bonus season on the horizon, we expect to see many professionals holding off their job search until they receive bonus payouts. Whilst buyouts are still going to happen, they are not as commonplace as in previous years. Many employers would prefer to wait for the right candidate rather than bite the bullet.

Many insurers have already pipelined talent for 2018 but there will be inevitably a rush for the top talent in Q2 2018, especially within focus growth areas for these insurers.

Salary Report for H1 2018*

Job title Years of experience Annual salary range (S$)
Head of Claims 15+ 180K+
Senior Manager 15+ 140K–200K
Manager 12–15 100K–140K
Assistant Manager 7–12 50K–110K

Chief Underwriter 15+  280K+
Head of Business Line 10–15 220K–320K
Senior Manager 8–12 140K–200K
Manager 6–10 80K–140K
Assistant Manager 3–6 60K–100K 

Chief Actuary 13+  300K+
Department Head 10+  220K–350K
Senior Manager 5–12 140K–220K
Manager 4–6  100K–150K
Associate 1–4 50K–120K

Chief Risk Officer  15+ 270K+
Head of Risk  10–16 200K–300K
Senior Manager 8–15 140K–240K 
Manager 5–10 90K–150K
Associate  3–7  50K–100K

Chief Compliance Officer 15+ 260K+ 
Compliance Director 13+ 200K–300K
Senior Manager 9–15 140K–220K 
Manager 5–12 90K–150K
Associate  3–7  40K–80K

Head of Audit 15+ 260K+ 
Director 13+  200K–300K 
Senior Manager 10–15 120K–200K 
Manager 6–10  80K–140k 
Associate  3–7  40K–80K

CFO 15+ 250K+
Finance Director 10+ 180K–270K
Senior Finance Manager 8–12 140K–200K
Finance Manager 5–8 100K–140K
Accountant 3–6  70K–100K

Consulting / Change
Head of Consulting / Change 15+ 240K+
Director 12+ 170K–250K
Senior Manager 10–15 120K–200K
Manager 6–10 80K–140K 
Associate  3–7 60K–80K


*Notes about salary table:

  1. Titles and levels vary from organisation to organisation.
  2. The salary ranges given are only approximate guides. For tailored salary advice, please contact us directly.
  3. 12-month base salaries are assumed.
  4. All other benefits and bonuses are in addition to these figures.
  5. Bonus ranges can vary significantly from company to company and will be influenced by market conditions, business and individual performances. Bonus ranges from 1 month at the low end to 100%+ at the upper.
  6. Holiday entitlements range from 1225 days with senior executives not usually receiving less than 18 days. Less than 15 is very rare and 20 days is becoming the norm.
  7. Healthcare policies are standard.
  8. Pension plans vary with some companies offering greater than the standard contribution. Top up schemes can increase employer contribution levels as much as 1520% of the base salary for senior executives.