Old Republic Surety Trains for the Future

UW Trainee Group PicOld Republic Surety is committed to excellence in underwriting and is developing underwriters to continue to grow. Our underwriter training program allows individuals a foundational knowledge into underwriting that is rewarding and challenging. The program isn’t just for external hires; our current employees can apply to be in the program as a way to advance their careers and better develop their underwriting skills.

“Old Republic’s underwriter training course provided me with a solid foundation on contract underwriting and the surety industry,” says Austin Chandler, a spring 2023 graduate. “Overall, the course was informative, engaging and enjoyable!”

What makes this program unique is the hybrid mixture of hands-on training that participants receive at their branch and the in-depth analysis and review of training at the home office. They are taught by the senior vice president of underwriting and other executives of the company.

A recent graduate of the program, Pierce Holtfreter, says, “This is true hands-on training from the executives of the company. These are dedicated executives who want the best for those who are committed to improving their abilities.”

Old Republic Surety believes in investing in our people. This four- to six-month learning opportunity combines some in-class, some in-office, and some online work. Monday and Friday are travel days for those who are outside the Milwaukee area, and home-office training is done Tuesday through Thursday. One of the highlights – and favorite portions of the experience – are the business case exercises, which expose trainees to real-world problems that they must analyze and work through with support from their branch staff.

There is a continuous review of the training, and branch staff help students. Branch managers are regularly apprised of student progress, and trainers and branch managers work together to identify areas where trainees need additional focus to master the skills needed to succeed in the field. The success of the student is the number-one goal.

Walter Young, another member of the first training group, says, “There are unlimited resources at your doorstep to help you be successful in the program.”

So much more than training

“The trainee program not only focuses specifically on the trainees’ surety underwriting career,” says Sean Rummel, an ORS underwriting hiring manager. “They do much more than that, with additional classes on growing as a business professional, learning mannerisms and professional etiquette. The program isn’t just in a classroom. It is at dinners, at social events, etc., all highlighting both individual growth and teamwork.”

What we see, beyond the learning and growth of skills, is a wonderful camaraderie where ideas are shared freely, peer support is generous, and collegial relationships are formed.

“The training program was an excellent way to build personal connections,” says Zach Weger, who graduated in the spring of 2023. “I connected with other trainees, made some meaningful friendships, and had a lot of fun doing it. I also connected with many of Old Republic’s executives since they were leading most of the training. While this was a great way to learn the material, it was also an excellent way to get to know our upper management. These connections were a very valuable part of the training program. It makes day-to-day work in the field a lot more manageable when you always have peers and mentors who are willing to help you out.”

At Old Republic Surety, our goal is to hire, produce and retain top talent, and we are investing in that vision with the underwriter training program. We are serious about supporting and developing the next generation of top-notch underwriters and encourage those with an interest to contact us to find out more