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Career Story: Insurance Assets Investment Accountant

Insurance Assets Investment Accountant

Job Title: Investment Accountant

Type of Company: I work for an investment firm. We specialize in managing assets for insurance companies.

Education: BS, Accounting, University of Connecticut •• MBA, Finance, University of Connecticut

Previous Experience: I've been in this job since graduating from college.

Job Tasks: Our company makes the investment decisions on the assets of insurance companies. I work in the investment accounting and reporting department which is responsible for reporting on the assets following very specific rules created by federal and state government agencies. We think of ourselves as an extension of our client's accounting team. We are in daily contact with the custodians (banks holdings the assets), other outside asset managers and clients. When dealing with clients, our contacts range from the investment accountant of the insurance company to the Controller, Treasurer or even CFO. Our job gets very busy in cycles. We report month-end numbers the first five business days of each month. Quarter-end (March/June/Sept) and year-end (Dec) times are even busier than normal due to extra reporting due at these periods. "Timely" and "accurate" are the two words most important to us.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of the job is being able to solve our clients' problems and deliver a product they appreciate. The worst part of the job is the long hours it requires at certain times of year. Six-day work weeks are the norm during the month of January due to year-end reporting.

Job Tips: My brother who is a CPA gave me advice when I first started working: tell your manager to "bring the dump truck." When first starting out, take on the tasks that not everyone will be willing to do. Show initiative. Taking the required courses is important, but what separates us from our competitors is our customer service. Having a background in dealing with customers would help you in understanding how to excel with your dealings with customers.

Additional Thoughts: When I mention to people that I'm an investment accountant the reaction usually is, "How do you do that job?" People are surprised to find out that I actually enjoy it. The important thing in finding any career is finding a job at a good company with good people. I was lucky enough to do this. You spend a lot of waking time with your co-workers, so they better be quality people or you will not be happy.

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