8 Sentry Insurance SQL Interview Questions (Updated 2024)

Updated on

August 11, 2024

Sentry Insurance use SQL for analyzing and processing vast insurance claim data, including claims frequency and severity analysis, as well as generating critical reports, such as dashboards for business leaders and data visualizations for stakeholders, supporting business intelligence and decision-making purposes. For this reason, Sentry Insurance always asks SQL questions during interviews for Data Science and Data Engineering positions.

Thus, to help you prep, here's 8 Sentry Insurance Group SQL interview questions – able to solve them?

8 Sentry Insurance Group SQL Interview Questions

SQL Question 1: Customer Policy Analytics

As a part of Sentry Insurance, you are part of a team that tracks and analyzes insurance policies taken by the customers. To assist in strategizing future business plans, you are requested to extract information detailing the 'number of policies bought by each customer each year' and 'the cumulative number of policies bought by each customer over the years'. To add a level of complexity, include only those customers who have bought at least 2 policies in a given year.

Example Input:
policy_idcustomer_idpurchase_year
34126752018
39106752018
41206752019
98304562017
65224562017
42314562018
27129872019
48231232020
19121232021
29311232021
Example Output:
customer_idpurchase_yearannual_policiescumulative_policies
675201822
675201913
456201722
456201813
123202122

In the first step, a common table expression (CTE) named is created which groups the data by , and counts the number of policies bought by each customer in a year filtering out those who bought less than two policies.

In the next step, we use a window function to keep a running total of the policies bought by each customer over the years (). The clause in the window function ensures that the running total is reset for each customer, and the clause ensures that years are processed in ascending order for each customer. Thus, we get the desired output.

For more window function practice, try this Uber SQL problem within DataLemur's online SQL code editor:

SQL Question 2: 2nd Highest Salary

Given a table of Sentry Insurance employee salaries, write a SQL query to find the 2nd highest salary among all employees.

Sentry Insurance Example Input:

employee_idsalary
12500
2800
31000
41200

Example Output:

second_highest_salary
1200

Write a SQL query for this interview question and run your code right in DataLemur's online SQL environment:

You can find a detailed solution here: 2nd Highest Salary.

SQL Question 3: What's the difference between and ?

The clause is used to filter rows from the result set of a , , or statement. It allows you to specify a condition that must be met for a row to be included in the result set.

The clause is used to filter groups created by the clause. It is similar to the clause, but it is used to specify conditions on the groups created by the clause, rather than on the individual rows of the table.

Say you were working on a social media analytics project for Sentry Insurance.

Here is an example of a SQL query that you might write which uses both the WHERE and HAVING clauses:

This query retrieves the total impressions and average conversions for each platform in the table, the date of the campaign is in January 2023. The rows are grouped by platform and the clause filters the groups to include only those with more than 5000 impressions and an average conversion rate above 0.2.

SQL Question 4: Calculate the average claim amount by customer

Sentry Insurance is looking to better understand their claim statistics. Specifically, your task is to identify the average claim amount by customer, which would help the company gain insights on client behavior and improve their service.

For this problem, we will use the and tables:

Example Input:
1001John Doe123 ABC St
1002Jane Smith456 DEF Ave
1003Tom Taylor789 GHI Blvd
Example Input:
claim_idcustomer_iddateamount
1100106/01/2022\$500
2100107/01/2022\$200
3100208/01/2022\$700
4100308/15/2022\$400
5100309/01/2022\$1000

You can fetch the required data using the following SQL query.

This query joins the and tables on the field, then groups by the and . For each , it calculates the average claim amount. In the final output table, each row corresponds to a different customer and shows the average claim amount for that customer.

Example output:
customer_idnameavg_claim_amount
1001John Doe\$350
1002Jane Smith\$700
1003Tom Taylor\$700

SQL Question 5: Can you explain the purpose of the constraint?

A is a field in a table that references the of another table. It creates a link between the two tables and ensures that the data in the field is valid.

Say for example you had sales analytics data from Sentry Insurance's CRM (customer-relationship management) tool.

The FOREIGN KEY constraint ensures that the data in the field of the "opportunities" table is valid, and prevents the insertion of rows in the table that do not have corresponding entries in the table. It also helps to enforce the relationship between the two tables and can be used to ensure that data is not deleted from the accounts table if there are still references to it in the table.

SQL Question 6: Average Claim Amount by Insurance Type at Sentry Insurance

You are provided with a database containing information about the numerous insurance claims Sentry Insurance has processed. The structure of the table is outlined in the example input below.

Example Input:

claim_idpolicy_typeclaim_dateclaim_amount
1Auto01/07/20225000
2Home01/09/202210000
3Life01/14/202215000
4Auto02/02/20228000
5Health02/15/20223000
6Life02/19/202220000
7Auto02/28/20227000

As an analyst for Sentry Insurance, management has asked you to find out the average claim amount for each type of insurance policy.

The output should contain the type of insurance policy and the average claim amount for that policy. Order the output by average claim amount in descending order.

Example Output:

policy_typeavg_claim_amount
Life17500
Home10000
Auto6666.67
Health3000

Here's the PostgreSQL query that would solve this problem:

This query first groups the data by type of insurance policy. It then computes the average claim amount for each group using the AVG function. Finally, the results are ordered by average claim amount in descending order.

To practice a very similar question try this interactive Amazon Highest-Grossing Items Question which is similar for calculating top items per category or this Amazon Average Review Ratings Question which is similar for calculating average values and grouping data.

SQL Question 7: Have you ever had to optimize a slow SQL query? How did you do it?

Here's some strategies that can generally speed up a slow SQL query:

• Only query the columns you actually need
• Index the columns used in the query
• Use the right kind of JOIN (be explicit about inner vs. outer joins)
• Use the right data types (for example INT vs BIGINT can save you disk space and memory)

While there's an entire industry dedicated to database performance tuning , for Data Analyst and Data Science interviews at Sentry Insurance, knowing the above basics should be more than enough to ace the SQL interview! Data Engineers on the other hand should know more about the command and understand a bit more about a query-execution plan.

SQL Question 8: Calculate Average Insurance Premiums by Policy Type

In Sentry Insurance company, each customer has an insurance policy, each policy belongs to a certain type (for example, car insurance, home insurance, life insurance, etc.), and each policy has a premium associated with it. Your job is to write a PostgreSQL query that calculates the average insurance premium for each policy type, for the year 2021.

Example Input:
999158901/01/2021Car Insurance1500
978276501/15/2021Home Insurance2500
789310202/02/2021Life Insurance2000
632295403/08/2021Car Insurance1300
875169707/31/2021Home Insurance3000
Example Output:
Car Insurance1400
Home Insurance2750
Life Insurance2000

In this PostgreSQL query, we select the policy type and calculate the average premium for each policy type. We use the clause to filter entries to only include policies that started in the year 2021. We then use the clause to group the results by policy type and apply the function to calculate the average insurance premium for each group of policies with the same type.

Sentry Insurance SQL Interview Tips

The best way to prepare for a Sentry Insurance SQL interview is to practice, practice, practice. Besides solving the above Sentry Insurance SQL interview questions, you should also solve the 200+ DataLemur SQL Interview Questions which come from companies like Google, Uber, and Microsoft.

Each problem on DataLemur has hints to guide you, full answers and most importantly, there is an interactive coding environment so you can right in the browser run your SQL query and have it executed.

To prep for the Sentry Insurance SQL interview you can also be useful to solve SQL questions from other insurance companies like:

Discover how Sentry Insurance is using AI to enhance fraud detection and protect customers, while also improving overall efficiency and effectiveness!

But if your SQL query skills are weak, forget about going right into solving questions – strengthen your SQL foundations with this DataLemur SQL Tutorial.

This tutorial covers SQL concepts such as joining multiple tables and sorting results with ORDER BY – both of which show up frequently in Sentry Insurance SQL interviews.

Sentry Insurance Group Data Science Interview Tips

What Do Sentry Insurance Data Science Interviews Cover?

Beyond writing SQL queries, the other types of problems to practice for the Sentry Insurance Data Science Interview are:

How To Prepare for Sentry Insurance Data Science Interviews?

I think the best way to study for Sentry Insurance Data Science interviews is to read the book Ace the Data Science Interview.

It solves 201 data interview questions taken from FAANG (FB, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, Google). The book's also got a refresher on Stats, SQL & ML. And finally it's helped thousands of people land their dream job in data, which is why it's earned 1000+ reviews on Amazon and a 4.5-star rating.

While the book is more technical in nature, it's also important to prepare for the Sentry Insurance behavioral interview. Start by understanding the company's unique cultural values.