If you are an insurance broker in Ontario, you may have heard about the IBAO, or Insurance Brokers Association of Ontario. This non-for-profit organization advocates for brokers across the province and provides a variety of valuable services to all members.
The association is designed to help young professionals obtain their brokers licencing and help established brokers stay up to date and advance their knowledge in the field.
What are the benefits of joining IBAO?
The Insurance Brokers Association of Ontario benefits members in 3 different ways. Firstly, it helps to advocate on their behalf. The association makes sure the interests of its members are “represented to the Government, Industry stakeholders, and within provincial and national policy shifts”.
Secondly, the IBAO offers excellent opportunities for learning and progressing your knowledge in all types of brokering. With the help of IBAO, you can take in-class licencing and national designation programs or engage in online webinars or eLearning courses.
All courses are designed to accommodate different learning styles and help all current and future brokers continue their education and advance in their field.
And finally, the IBAO offers many member discounts and services. For example, IBAO members receive a 10% discount at all Accor hotels and up to 25% off of car rentals with Enterprise. Members also receive benefits from other programs like BMO banking, MedCan, and Telus (to name just a few).
How do you become a member of IBAO?
To become a member of the IBAO, you must be associated with a brokerage. Brokerages pay an annual membership that is based on the number of brokers they have within their company. These fees are paid yearly, and membership runs from January 1st to December 31st.
Membership must be renewed at the beginning of the year for brokers to access services throughout the year. Note, however; you can join the IBAO at any time. If you do not participate until halfway through the year, your membership fees will be prorated.
Unfortunately, individuals who are not associated with a brokerage cannot join the IBAO at this time.
How do you become an Insurance Broker?
You can also become an insurance broker through the IBAO website. If you are interested in a career in insurance brokering, several different courses are available. Courses like the Broker Launchpad can help you to prepare for your RIBO exam while at the same time allowing you to customize your learning options.
The Broker Launchpad is available for online or in-class learning, weekday and weekend learning, and online or in-person exams.
Next, you will take your RIBO level 1 exam. Note that you do not have to take a course to write the exam. Courses are designed to help educate you and prepare you for your exam, but they are unnecessary. You also do not need to be sponsored or employed to write the exam.
With that being said, you must pass the RIBO level 1 exam to become an Insurance Broker in Ontario.
Once you have passed the exam, you can start looking for employment. After one year of work you can apply for your RIBO licence.