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Underwriting Manager

At Northwestern Mutual, we are strong, innovative and growing. We invest in our people. We care and make a positive difference.


Direct and manage the operations of an Underwriting unit through the recruitment, selection, training, development, motivation, and salary administration of underwriter staff. Specifically, oversee/coordinate division workflow and manage New Business projects, customer service initiatives, work efforts and risk analysis of underwriters, with the goal of ensuring a customer-centered communication focus at the agency level. Participate, coordinate or independently lead complex projects to include major system and process improvement initiatives in the New Business Department. Serve as communication liaison/resource, providing technical problem resolution with field management, agents, company management, other companies and insurance departments regarding underwriting concerns and issues. Develop, implement, and monitor customer service standards for agency-level staff.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities

People Leadership and Management

  • Plan, direct, and coordinate the activities of an Underwriting unit - maintaining departmental service standards and objectives with favorable mortality experience and persistency at the lowest possible net cost.

  • Supervise and direct the work activities and risk analysis of underwriters. Perform all aspects of performance management and career development through goal setting, ongoing assessment and coaching.

  • Responsible for the development of underwriters through the referral process, individual instruction, case audits, and classroom instruction. Coordinate and implement new underwriting guidelines, practices, and procedures.

Operational/Project Management

  • Participate, coordinate or independently lead complex projects to include major system and process improvement initiatives in the New Business Department.

  • Provide leadership to all aspects of these systems and process improvements including workflow, process changes and systems development initiatives. Act as a liaison to other insurance operations departments when implementing initiatives. Execute change management and communication plans.

  • Develop, implement, and monitor customer service standards for the Field Force. Initiate communication to address and resolve technical problems with field management.

  • Recommend and implement improved service strategies/standards to address work efficiencies. (i.e. divisional workflow roles/responsibilities; work area layout/workflow).

  • Coordinate designs, and deliver field visitations programs and videoconference to improve Home Office/Field relationships and to communicate New Business practices and changes.

  • Manage the budget for respective unit.

Technical Leadership/Escalation Point

  • Respond to complex/sensitive customer service complaints and questions in compliance with the National Association of Insurance Commission guidelines.


  • Bachelors' degree and/or an equivalent combination of education or progressively responsible work experience.

  • Underwriting technical experience required.

  • Track record of obtaining results.

  • Demonstrated skills in relationship building, planning and directing work, decision-making, communication, and change management.

  • Strong project management skills with the ability to lead or manage departmental projects or process improvement initiatives.

  • Strong interest in people development with competence in staff selection, assignment, training, development, motivation and recognition.

  • Superior communication skills with the proven ability to build trusted relationships and successfully negotiate issues with the field, policy owners, and employees.

  • Minimum of seven years of operational experience preferred. Experience may include people management experience, Lead Underwriter Consultant, training development of underwriters at all levels resulting in performance improvements.

Skills-Proficiency Level:

Business Metrics - Intermediate
Cross-Functional Partnerships - Advanced
Customer Service - Advanced
Detail-Oriented - Advanced
Field Consulting - Advanced
Financial Analysis - Intermediate
Future Planning - Intermediate
Industry Trend Analysis - Intermediate
Insurance Products - Intermediate
Insurance Underwriting - Basic
Process Improvements - Intermediate
Risk Analysis - Basic

Compensation Range:

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Northwestern Mutual pays on a geographic-specific salary structure and placement in the salary range for this position will be determined by a number of factors including the skills, education, training, credentials and experience of the candidate; the scope, complexity as well as the cost of labor in the market; and other conditions of employment. At Northwestern Mutual, it is not typical for an individual to be hired at or near the top of the range for their role and compensation decisions are dependent on the facts and circumstances of each case. Please note that the salary range listed in the posting is the standard pay structure. Positions in certain locations (such as California) may provide an increase on the standard pay structure based on the location. Please click here for additional information relating to location-based pay structures.

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We are an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age or status as a protected veteran, or any other characteristic protected by law.

If you work or would be working in California, Colorado, New York City, Washington or outside of a Corporate location, please click here for information pertaining to compensation and benefits.


We’re excited about the potential people bring to Northwestern Mutual. You can grow your career here while enjoying first-class perks, benefits, and commitment to diversity and inclusion.