Professional Standards

Research & Thought Leadership
Professional Standards
Capacity Building
AIF’s Professional Standards (PSD) Division works in partnership with the industry to enhance the development, implementation and advocacy of professional standards and ethics within the financial services industry.
The division acts as the Secretariat for a voluntary industry-led body, called the Financial Services Professional Board which develops and advocates professional and ethical standards across banking, capital markets, insurance and Islamic financial services.

These standards are benchmarked against world-leading professional standards and industry best practices.


      The Asian Institute of Finance (AIF) had been appointed as the Industry Lead Body (ILB) in 2012, to spearhead the development and promotion of NOSS for the Financial Services Industry (FSI). The FSI is divided into 4 key sectors; Banking, Capital Markets, Insurance, and Islamic Finance.

      AIF works closely with the Department of Skills Development (DSD), Ministry of Human Resource as well as FSI stakeholders including financial institutions, affiliate institutes and industry associations to undertake developmental activities on NOSS. DSD [or known as Jabatan Pembangunan Kemahiran (JPK)] is the government agency responsible for promoting skills training programmes for all industries in Malaysia.


      As the country is progressing steadily towards achieving high income nation status, human capital development has become increasingly essential. NOSS forms part of the broader Skills Malaysia agenda announced under the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP) by the Prime Minister on 11th January 2011, where the government wants 50 per cent of highly-skilled workers to be developed by 2020. In addition, NOSS is recognised as an occupational standard under Part IV of the National Skills Development Act 2006 (NASDA - Act 652).

      NOSS consists of desired competencies (categorised as knowledge, skills and attitude) expected of a skilled worker to complete a given job in an occupational area. NOSS is developed in collaboration with experienced industry practitioners and academicians in the related field to enhance the standard’s credibility and acceptance by the industry.

      Upon successful completion of the NOSS training programmes and assessments, candidates will obtain the Malaysian Skills Certificate.

      The 5 levels of the Malaysian Skills Certificate are:

      Participants can be certified by undergoing any of the following three methods of skills training certification:

      Accredited Training Centre: Classroom training
      Accreditation of Prior Achievements: Accreditation based on work experience and proof of work; and
      National Dual Training System: Consist of classroom and practical training modules.

      In 2007, the NOSS certification was recognised as a skills qualification by the Malaysian Qualification Agency (MQA) under the Malaysian Qualification Framework (MQF). MQF is an instrument that develops and categorises qualifications based on a set of criteria that are approved nationally and benchmarked against international best practices.

      A successful adoption of NOSS is beneficial to employers and employees of the industry. For example:

      Employers Employees
      Hire, develop and retain the right workers Clearly defined job descriptions and responsibility levels expected of them
      Workers are clear about their job descriptions and responsibilities Increase job satisfaction from improved confidence through higher standards of performance
      Identify workers’ knowledge and skills gaps Identify their own skills and knowledge gaps
      Identify priorities for human capital development and improve organisational planning Gain recognised certifications


      NOSS Activities Sector 2013 2014 2015
      Occupational Analysis (OA) Takaful and Insurance
      NOSS: Family Takaful and Life Insurance Underwriting Level 4 Takaful and Insurance
      NOSS: Family Takaful and Life Insurance Underwriting Level 5 Takaful and Insurance
      NOSS: General Takaful and General Insurance Underwriting Level 4 Takaful and Insurance
      NOSS: General Takaful and General Insurance Underwriting Level 5 Takaful and Insurance
      NOSS Promotional Seminar: Transformation Towards a Flexible and Responsive Human Capital Development Takaful and Insurance, Banking, Capital Markets and Islamic Finance
      NOSS: General Claims Level 4 & 5 General Claims Insurance and Takaful
      NOSS: Development Document and Curriculum of Competency Unit (CoCu) for General Claims Level 4 & 5 General Claims Insurance and Takaful
      NOSS: Promotional Seminar and Briefing to the Financial Planning Industry Malaysian Financial Planning Council


      General Takaful and General Insurance products protect risk against property losses, business interruptions, marine hull and cargo goods, machinery breakdowns, burglaries, workmen compensation and professional indemnities. Underwriting is a process of evaluation of risk of potential loss and to determine Takaful contribution / Insurance premium rate based on company’s underwriting guidelines and statutory requirements.

      General Takaful and General Insurance Underwriting Management Level 5, is developed for workers and/or participants whom are known in the industry as General Takaful Underwriting Managers or General Insurance Underwriting Managers. They are expected to have the ability to manage and handle technical and large risks which require higher level of competencies on underwriting.

      Based on industry’s best practices, a competent General Takaful Manager or General Insurance Manager should equip themselves with the following core competencies:

      • Marine Hull and Cargo Underwriting;
      • Specialised Liability;
      • Bond and Guarantee;
      • Large and Specialised Risk;
      • Retakaful and Reinsurance Arrangement; and
      • Risk Survey and Risk Improvement.

      Table 1 below is a summary extraction from the NOSS curriculum which shows its related knowledge, skills and attitude necessary for a worker to complete a given work activity:

      Job Title General Takaful Underwriting Manager / General Insurance Underwriting Manager
      Competency Unit Marine Hull and Cargo Underwriting
      Work Activity Prepare Marine Hull and Cargo Risk Assessment
      NOSS Job Level Five

      Knowledge Skills Attitude
      Understand the history of marine insurance, guidelines, acts and regulation set by the international regulatory Authority. Ability to check and interpret information in the proposal forms. Meticulous when analysing information in the proposal forms.
      Understand the different types of:
      • Cargo insurance markets;
      • Marine risk and marine cargo coverages;
      • Cargo vessels and documentations; and
      • Marine cargo and marine hull insurance.
      Ability to identify the different types of cargo, classification of vessels, flags and country of origin of the vessels and the tonnage of the vessels. Precise when identifying the types of marine hull and cargo coverages.
      Understand the definition of Incoterms and company’s underwriting manuals and policies. Ability to analyse marine cargo documents, ownership of vessels and marine and cargo coverages. Systematic when identifying and gathering information related to the vessels.
      Understand the definition of institute trade and hull clauses and the Malaysian Regulatory Framework related to marine hull and cargo. Ability to gather claim records of applicants. Inquisitive mind when gathering information related to the applicant’s claim experience/records.

  • “NOSS has actually created a platform to ensure a more structured standard operating procedure acceptable by the Takaful/Insurance Industry locally. Those certified under the NOSS programme could bring along professionalism and competency that would contribute to high self confidence in each of the certified personnel.”

    Mohd Adli Shaharuddin
    Takaful Ikhlas
    Takaful/Insurance NOSS Panel Industry Expert
  • "I consider that it is my good fortune to have been involved with AIF to play a small part in assisting on the development of formal written NOSS for the further enhancement of underwriting skills for the general insurance and takaful industry in Malaysia."

    Tommy Yap
    Former Senior Underwriter
    Swiss National Insurance
    Takaful/Insurance NOSS Panel Industry Expert
  • “School leavers who are not able to get into universities or colleges still have hopes to be a “somebody” in the white collar industry by attending NOSS programmes.”

    Hazlinda Yahaya
    AVP, Head of Medical/Health Operation (former)
    Takaful Ikhlas
  • “NOSS serves as an excellent benchmark of competence and it is highly recommended for industry practitioners whom are keen to embark on self-enhancement.”

    Jessica Voon
    Principal Trainer
    Jessicavoon People Growth Services