While in university, Melissa McKenzie knew that she enjoyed learning about and working with people, research, investigation and law.
Like many of us, she wondered how she might be able to translate her interests and what she was good at into a career path.
Though initially her career goal was a position with the RCMP when she started her Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice, an injury required her to change ‘the plan.’
“I don’t think I have ever done the same thing two days in a row;
every day is different!”
—Melissa McKenzie, Claims Adjuster, Axa-Pacific Insurance
Melissa says that it was actually a family friend who had been an adjuster for 50 years that introduced her to the industry. “He knew my interests and asked why I had never considered insurance before,” she explains.
“I went online and started to check out what types of roles were available.”
She liked what she saw! Melissa was hired by Axa-Pacific Insurance as a Claims Adjuster before graduation from the University of the Fraser Valley and has been working in the property and casualty insurance industry for just over a year.
An adjuster works with “people who are having some of the worst days of their lives,” explains Melissa. They help people and companies work through the claims process when risk has become a reality – whether it be as a result of a car accident, fire, economic shift or catastrophe like the recent earthquake and tsunami in Japan.
Part of Melissa’s role is to investigate what has occurred, interpret the insurance policy in place and make a determination of what can be done to support restoring the loss. This involves working with law enforcement and special investigations units, conducting research, and building relationships with professionals throughout her own and other industries.
“My mind is constantly working and I am always learning new things,” Melissa shares. “I don’t think I have ever done the same thing two days in a row; every day is different!”
Melissa recognizes that the “insurance industry sometimes seems to carry a bad stereotype of being just about sales or looking to deny people coverage. I always explain to people that I am here to help and the first thing I do is look for coverage for their claim.”
As an Ambassador with the Insurance Institute of Canada’s Career Connections Program, she strives to dispel these misconceptions and to showcase that insurance is a part of everything we do in life and in business and offers a wide variety of rewarding career options.
For more information about being an adjuster or any of the other 8 professional roles that can serve as a gateway to the insurance industry visit:
www.career-connections.info or drop us a line with your questions at email@example.com