Online Risk Management Bachelor’s Degree

Risk management professionals identify risks and create strategies to help reduce, mitigate, or manage risk to an acceptable level. Graduates of a risk management degree online program gain the skills and knowledge to carry out a risk analysis and help companies minimize risk impact.

In the following guide, prospective students can further explore risk management as a career and the online programs that can get them on the right track. Typically, individuals who work in risk management, like an underwriter, need a bachelor's degree at minimum to enter the field. The guide also covers salary, earning potential, and job growth for risk professionals.

What is a Job in Risk Management Like?

Risk management experts weigh the pros and cons of risk and present their findings to companies to help minimize their impact. Professionals work in various industries with the common goal of assisting companies and clients in avoiding costly pitfalls. Risk managers help clients safeguard financial health and protect a company's employees, assets, and reputation.

Businesses face various kinds of risk, including strategic, compliant and regulatory, and operational. Everything in business involves some hazardous possibilities, and risk professionals aim to help enterprises minimize costs while maximizing potential. By understanding and ultimately managing risk, companies can control or even prevent ramifications.

Online risk management degrees prepare students for work in insurance or financial services. Risk management professionals work as underwriters, insurance brokers, financial managers, and actuaries. Risk professionals work with clients from diverse industries. Consequently, to provide proper analysis and recommendations, a risk professional must also be familiar with that industry.

Courses in a bachelor's degree in insurance and risk management online program teach students the fundamentals of enterprise risk management (ERM). Students learn how to identify and quantify risk, strategically plan, take preventative measures, and calculate risk and reward.

Many risk professionals specialize in a certain type of risk management, such as financial or operational. Graduates who choose to concentrate on risk and compliance, for example, typically work for large financial and IT enterprises.

What Can I Do with an Online Risk Management Bachelor’s Degree?

The following sections take a look at the skills and knowledge needed to work in the field of risk management. Prospective students can explore typical risk management degree online program curriculum and also learn more about the average salary for risk management experts.

The guide also looks closer at the industries risk professionals work in and what the job outlook is for the field over the next decade. Career opportunities vary, but most positions require a bachelor's degree, often in insurance and risk management, to get started.

Skills & Knowledge Gained

Risk professionals possess strong problem-solving skills. They must demonstrate discipline to objectively solve ethical, legal, and global challenges that insurers and the insured face. In a risk management degree online program, students master the processes, methods, and best practices of insurance companies and those involved in managing and advising on risk.

All risk professionals must back up their analysis and recommendations with data. This means they must possess strong analytical and math skills, especially in actuary careers. Risk management experts also must know the ins and outs of the regulations and laws of a business or industry, such as those within banks or a company that manufactures overseas.

Risk managers must consider the financial, safety, and brand risk a company might face, given a particular action. In their report, professionals provide possible solutions to help mitigate such risks. Risk professionals attempt to get ahead of the problem and advise clients based on risk and reward.

Along with problem-solving, analytical, and math skills, a student in an enterprise risk management degree online program also gains financial acumen, communication skills, and industry knowledge. As noted earlier, professionals in risk management need a thorough understanding of the industry or field in which they provide solutions.

Knowledge of the industry and market enables risk management professionals to better identify possible risks. Students can hone their skills by either taking specific coursework, such as one on commercial bank management for banks or merchandising for fashion, or by taking on a summer internship where they can gain practical experience.

Careers & Salary Potential

A degree in risk management can open doors to opportunities in diverse fields and industries. The skills and knowledge which students obtain from an insurance and risk management degree online can apply to various roles within an organization, agency, or firm.

While many graduates pursue work in financial services, the $1.2 trillion insurance industry, or management consulting, many other career options exist. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) lists related occupations available to those with a risk management degree, all of which require the same basic skill set and education.

  • Financial/Banking Services: This sector includes businesses which provide financial, banking, and money management services. Risk management professionals provide these businesses with insight into the risks involved in loans, venture capital, mortgages, and insurance.
  • Insurance Agency or Brokerage: Insurance helps protect the insured from potential financial loss. Insurance risk managers help supervise a client's insurance coverage, and they may also advise on ways to mitigate safety issues and reduce the risk of claims.
  • Management Consulting: Management consultants provide companies with professional feedback to help them improve performance. A risk management expert can help by alerting companies to possible risks, which may be one or many, including operational, financial, technological, or environmental.
Financial Manager

Annual Median Salary: $127,990

Companies put financial managers in charge of monitoring and maintaining financial health. Their primary duties involve assessing risk and proposing feasible ways to mitigate it. Financial managers typically need a bachelor's degree, plus five years of relevant work experience.

Underwriter

Annual Median Salary: $69,380

Underwriters decide whether or not to approve insurance or financial protection and under what terms. For example, a mortgage must pass through an underwriter who determines coverage amounts and premiums.

Claims Investigator

Annual Median Salary: $65,670

Claims investigators evaluate insurance claims, deciding on the validity of a claim. They also determine how much an insurer must pay if they find proof to support the claim.

Quantitative Analyst

Annual Median Salary: $83,477

Quantitative analysts work for financial firms and determine whether the risk is proportional to the expected market return. To do so, they use predictive models on investment, pricing, and risk.

Insurance Sales Agent

Annual Median Salary: $50,600

Insurance sales agents sell insurance to clients and help them find a plan that suits their needs, which appropriately matches their risk and desired level of protection. Many insurance agents hold a four-year degree, and all must obtain a license for the state in which they work.