Name: Miraj Shah
Job Title: Actuarial Trainee Consultant
University: University of Warwick
Degree Subject: Mathematics, Operational Research, Statistics and Economics (MORSE)
Miraj Shah, an Actuarial Trainee Consultant at Hymans Robertson, tells us in this case study why he chose this career path and what it is like to start out in the actuarial sector.
How did you get your job at Hymans Robertson?
I already had my sights set on the actuarial profession at university. I enjoyed maths and statistics at sixth form and I was interested in a career that allowed me to apply these skills in a financial setting. During university, I applied for an internship at Hymans and secured a role in the Actuarial practice after successfully passing a series of online tests and interviews. I was then offered a graduate role after completing the internship.
Why did you choose Hymans Robertson?
Coming from a mathematical background, I really wanted a career that allowed me to develop both my people skills and technical abilities. Hymans is a consultancy, and whilst the work we do is inherently technical, we often need to communicate and present our findings to audiences who are often less experienced in the technical jargon – this brings new and interesting challenges when meeting and building relationships with a wide range of clients.
I chose to join a firm that would allow me to develop a broad range of skills, take on a wide range of responsibilities and add value from my first day, without becoming lost in a sea of graduates. I found Hymans to be the perfect fit – I have been able to build relationships with everyone in my department but there’s not so many people that my contribution goes unnoticed.
Before my internship, I had spent some time in other companies and realised that a firm’s culture and work environment was also a key factor important to me. The benefit of doing an internship meant I was able to experience first-hand that everyone is incredibly friendly. I thoroughly enjoyed my internship and had no doubts it was where I wanted to start my career when I was offered a graduate role.
What’s it like working at Hymans Robertson?
The past year has been really fun. I’ve got to know some brilliant people, been involved in innovative projects and have also had exposure to presenting to clients. At Hymans, your working life is what you make of it. There are numerous opportunities to get involved in all types of work, all it takes is being vocal and making sure your manager and client teams know what you’re interested in.
What skills have you found to be particularly useful in this sector/profession?
Flexibility and time management are probably the most useful skills. Most people plan their schedule in advance, tackling their to-do list one item at a time, but often and particularly in a client focussed environment, new work can come in at any time with urgent deadlines. It’s important to be able to adapt to the situation, manage expectations with clients and colleagues, and ultimately be able to take charge of your responsibilities and prioritise work appropriately.
Do you have any advice for anyone wanting to work in the actuarial industry?
- Get some experience! Work experience or an internship will help you decide whether the career is the right fit for you, and will help you understand the atmosphere and sector that you will flourish in.
- It’s a commitment! The journey of qualifying as an actuary is tough and it requires time, effort and dedication. Be prepared to sacrifice some of your evenings and weekends as you near the exams. My biggest tip would be to utilise as much of the dead time in your day; commuting into work means reading your flashcards!
- Talk to people! Go to careers and networking events, essentially meet as many people as possible that are connected to the industry.