Education is the key to being able to effectively implement and execute a sophisticated risk management regime like a captive insurance program. This doesn’t only apply to the accounting and insurance professionals that are involved in the day-to-day operations of these types of programs. It also applies to the risk managers who represent companies that own them and to insurance producers that help to set them up.
There are several venues to learn about captives and how they are used. The International Center for Captive Insurance Education (ICCIE) provides an online platform of coursework that leads to the Associate in Captive Insurance (ACI) designation. I am on the faculty for this program and it is an excellent course of study for accounting, insurance and business professionals to get a solid foundation of captive insurance concepts. You can find more information at http://www.iccie.org/
Several associations provide annual conference opportunities that are full of great educational content. The Vermont Captive Insurance Association, the Bermuda Captive Conference and the Cayman Captive Conference are all venue-oriented educational experiences and are excellent for delivering timely information on emerging industry issues.
For more general insurance and underwriting educational topics there are several continuing education websites that can provide the ongoing training needed to maintain licenses and credentials. I sponsor one of these websites at http://cedarconsulting.360training.com
Finally, industry service providers organize conferences that have client education as their primary purpose. USA Risk Group (www.usarisk.com), the largest independent captive services company, sponsors an annual educational conference for captive industry participants. This type of conference is typically more focused on the practical nuts and bolts issues of captive insurance and the smaller group results in better access to speakers and service providers. The conference is highly rated by participants. This year’s conference will be held in Charlotte, NC at the Ballantyne Resort, May 26th-27th, 2010. You can contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org for specifics on registration for this event.
Education in and of itself is worthless. It’s not in the knowing, but rather in the application of the knowledge that yields results. These educational opportunities will give you what you need not only to understand the concepts of captive insurance but to apply them to your circumstances.
Execution is always the factor that divides the successful and the wannabe. Gain the knowledge you need but don’t forget to deploy that knowledge in a meaningful way to solve risk related problems for your organization.