Gaurang Gada, IRMCert: Senior Risk Consultant, Casualty Risk Consulting/Client Risk Solutions, AIG APAC
How did you get your job?
My background is scientific and after graduating I began my career as a Quality Specialist in the Shipping Industry which later expanded through the company into Operational Safety, Health, Security & Environment management which required understanding and managing risks pertaining staff health & safety, ship security and environmental responsibility which are all very high profile risk areas in the shipping sector. This expanded role resulted my move to Singapore, which is a major global shipping hub, as my focus became increasingly corporate. My next career progression was into the Group Risk Department as Risk Manager in which I had broad responsibility within the Enterprise Risk framework for risk analysis, advising operational management, Business Continuity Planning and preparing Board reports. Insurance is the primary financial control that Risk Managers use, but it was a gap in my experience up until 2016 when I joined a general insurance company as a risk advisor to our underwriters and our insured clients.
What’s a typical day like?
My ‘typical’ days can be very different, for instance I can be a) reviewing the risks that our underwriters are quoting b) Meeting with clients and reviewing risk management practices to improve loss records – drawing on my own experience as a risk manager and c) analytics projects which involve research on loss exposures and extending our knowledge of trends in loss data and emerging risks.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
My Asia Pacific Regional role is not limited to any particular industry and the best part is the different challenge with each client and country I work with and the difference in the lines of business we insure. No one day is the same. It can vary from reviewing exposures pertaining Product Liability & Recall , Worker’s Compensation, General Liability, Environment Impairment Liability, etc. As a Risk and ERM professional understanding the risks exposures in varied industries/sectors across Asia Pacific and working on the potential mitigations/controls that can minimize these risk exposures is the best part of this role.
What are the challenges?
Perhaps the biggest challenge is keeping current. Of course I learn a lot from our clients, they are the experts in their field, but I also have to bring something to the table. I have to bring an external perspective that’s relevant or insight from analysis of their data that can lead us to jointly developed responses. With our most sophisticated clients, this is a very rewarding challenge!
In what way are your IRM qualifications relevant?
As I have learnt everything about Enterprise Risk Management on the job, IRM provides me a more structured platform of learning Risk Management fundamentals and principles. It helps me to co-relate my day to day risk related work with the ERM concepts and how to approach this in a more structured way. It further enhances my quality of work as it helps me to thinks from the client’s point of view as to what are the risk exposures to theirs business.
What would you say to others thinking about joining IRM as a member?
Irrespective in which industry you are in, IRM course provides you with a strong base for understanding ERM principles and how to apply in day to day work. It provides the theory as well as the practical examples which helps to co-relate with the tasks you carry out at work.
How has your role developed and what are your career ambitions? Has being linked to the IRM helped?
It helped to review risk not just as Operational Risk but how it can impact the overall business performance, strategy and planning. It helps me to think from the client’s perspective and beyond to their network of stakeholders.
How do I get into/work as a/become a…?/What advice can you give to others? (Aim to provide at least 3 tips)
From my own experience and observations I would advise others to move into Risk Management when they already have developed expertise in specific work streams – for instance my own in Health safety security and environment
Research, read, study!
Try to think like the CEO – not to do their job, but to understand their needs.