Underwriting Research and Development, CVP


Date: Oct 8, 2021

Location: New York, NY, US

Company: New York Life Insurance Co


When you join New York Life, you’re joining a company that values development, career growth, collaboration, innovation, and diversity & inclusion. We want employees to feel proud about being part of a company that is committed to doing the right thing. Through various resources and programs, you can grow your career while developing personally and professionally.




The CVP, Underwriting Research and Development (R&D) is responsible for supporting the Underwriting function by ensuring it is efficient, competitive, and results in high quality underwriting decisions consistent with the mortality assumptions priced for our life insurance products. This role will be staffed in New York Home Office. The candidate will have experience in individual life underwriting, predictive modeling, accelerated underwriting, and successful project leadership and execution. Key accountabilities include but are not limited to analysis of key competitor’s underwriting process and practices; the designing the ideal underwriting and application process in collaboration with key stakeholders; monitoring underwriting trends and helping to educate underwriters and other key stakeholders; execution of projects that deliver underwriting process improvements, training and promotion of process changes; researching enhancements to underwriting guidelines to ensure they are consistent with NYL product pricing and compliant with all regulations; and collaborating with underwriting and other key stakeholders to ensure all underwriting guidelines, process improvements and new technology meet their needs and are successfully adopted.  


The ideal candidate is an experienced leader with the ability to manage and influence relationships. This role is best suited for a results-driven individual who can take a collaborative but authoritative approach toward meeting critical business needs through successful partnerships. The candidate will work closely with senior leaders from the Underwriting team (e.g. Head of Underwriting, Chief Medical Director, Chief Underwriter, Head of Underwriting Operations, Head of Risk Insights), and multiple internal business units and senior leaders (Chief Analytics Officer, Head of Strategic Capabilities, Head of Strategic Solutions) to oversee key strategic initiatives, and make and drive significant decisions  that impact Underwriting performance and efficiencies. This CVP must have a continuous improvement mindset and a deep appreciation for the customer experience. This role will have direct responsibility to set and present strategy to senior leadership and provide direction to influence decisions for underwriting projects and initiatives.


In order to stay competitive in the current fast paced insurance environment, research is gathered from external competitors which will lay the necessary groundwork to decide which new projects Underwriting will pursue. For example, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, companies had to decide whether to adjust their underwriting requirements, especially as it relates to lab results. Potential customers were concerned about contracting the virus from examiners coming into their homes performing blood draws, which is a necessary underwriting requirement in order to purchase life insurance. This critical decision had to be made as well as the future decision. That is, when does underwriting require lab results in a post-COVID-19 world.


There are also existing multi-year internal projects where decisions must be made regarding new project versions, what to include in the new version, and the general scope and direction an existing project will take. For example, Underwriting started a new predictive model in 2018 called LIFT (Life Insurance Fast Track). The model predicts whether a customer’s labs can be bypassed or waived. This model must be monitored on an ongoing basis ensuring that it continues to perform as designed. The data and rules must be refreshed to ensure ongoing accuracy. LifeSpan is a second generation of predictive modelling used in underwriting to determine underwriting risk class. Although the first version of LifeSpan is scheduled to launch later this year, decisions on the scope of future versions of LifeSpan must be made. Since all these projects involve a mortality component, the final decision on these underwriting projects and others, will impact NYL’s bottom line. 


Major Responsibilities

  • Research and analyze internal trends in support of business case for opportunities to improve and optimize workflow efficiencies, mitigate risks of mortality and morbidity, improve adoption of technology enhancements, and proactively identify solutions that satisfy regulatory requirements.   
  • Keep abreast of compliance industry standards and benchmarks.
  • Participate in professional organizations and conferences, providing underwriting thought leadership.
  • Lead and manage Underwriting R&D projects as the Underwriting subject matter expert which include predictive models and metrics for ongoing analysis.
  • Partner and provide guidance and support with Product Development, Agency, Technology, Compliance, Office of General Council (OGC), Office of Governmental Affairs (OGA), Underwriting, Center for Data Science & Artificial Intelligence (CDSAi), Claims, Reinsurance, Marketing, Strategic Solutions, and Sales for new product activities.
  • Establish effective working relationships with business and function associates, including participation in relevant committee meetings.
  • Analyze and drive implementation of new applications that account for the business implications and the impact to mortality, claims, and associated stakeholders (e.g. Agency, Claims, etc.)
  • Monitor, analyze, and communicate industry and underwriting changes and regulations in coordination with Underwriting and Strategic Capabilities leadership.



  • Must demonstrate strong communication and business writing skills
  • Excellent negotiation and influencing skills
  • Knowledge and understanding of NYL’s insurance and distribution helpful
  • Ability to communicate with senior level management
  • Outstanding judgement, critical thinking, time management
  • Ability to prioritize multiple assignments and multi-task, strong organization and problem-solving skills
  • Results oriented and strong execution orientation skills



  • Bachelor’s degree required
  • Master’s degree in related field a plus
  • 10+ years of insurance industry experience required
  • Experience and knowledge of individual life underwriting preferred
  • Underwriting business experience with predictive models required
  • 2+ years management experience and leading projects
  • Previous line management experience preferred





Recognized as one of Fortune’s World’s Most Admired Companies, New York Life is committed to improving local communities through a culture of employee giving and volunteerism, supported by our Foundation. We invite you to bring your talents to New York Life, so we can continue to help families and businesses “Be Good At Life.” To learn more, please visit LinkedIn, our Newsroom and the Careers page of www.NewYorkLife.com.

Job Requisition ID: 84604




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