Are you not sure if being an actuary is right for you? Well, here we try to make the decision easier for you; From job security to financial reward, there are many reasons why an actuarial career can be perfect for you. We’ve narrowed these reasons down to our top seven…
1. Job security
An actuarial career is a stable one. A sustainable society will always need pensions and insurance, which means that actuaries will always be in demand. Technology changed the landscape of many professions and the actuarial profession was not exempt from this. However, by embracing the changes and the opportunities that these technological advancements bring, you will succeed.
2. Intellectual challenge
As an actuary, you will often be faced with intellectually challenging problems. To be successful in this field, you will need to demonstrate excellent analytical thinking and the ability to solve complicated financial problems. Solid commercial and economic understanding, as well as being able to interpret and communicate complex information in a clear way are also essential. Whether you work in a consultancy firm or for an insurance company, working with different types on people in various roles as well the further training you can pursue enables personal development throughout your actuarial career. This can also help create many different types of future career opportunities whether you want to change up your job role or even the type of industry you work in. There are many options in this career path that you can cater to your interests and needs as you progress in your career.
3. A prestigious industry
Compared to other professional bodies, the actuarial profession is relatively small. With just under 32,000 members of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA, July 2018), you will be part of a high-profile, prestigious and well respected profession. It is not easy to qualify as an actuary, and the exams are rigorous. Therefore, you will have to be willing to put the work in, not only do you have to pass your exams but you also have to excel at your day job. You will have to have focus, determination and the ability to cope well under pressure. What you will gain, however, is a world-recognised qualification at the end of it.
4. Excellent study support and training
Pass rates in the early actuarial exam papers are between 50% and 70% but can fall as low as 30% in the later exams. On average, you will spend between 15 and 20 hours a week studying for your qualification. This requires a huge amount of commitment and dedication. However, the help and support given by employers is generous as many offer paid study leave, cover the cost of external tuition and exam costs as well as offering mentorship schemes.
5. Make an impact
Actuaries help form high-level business decisions and solve real-life problems in a range of industries. From influencing investment decisions to designing pension schemes that could affect thousands of people, becoming an actuary means that the decisions you make impact people’s lives.
6. A wide range of opportunities
Historically, actuaries were often found mainly in life assurance and non-life insurance industries, but these days actuaries work in a variety of non-traditional roles. These range from actuarial consultants, life offices and the professional financial service firms. Over half of the members of the IFoA work in non-traditional roles and these opportunities continue to grow.
The UK actuarial qualification is highly valued throughout the world. 45% of the UK qualified members are based outside of the UK; with many international opportunities in locations such as Australia, New Zealand, India and South Africa to name but a few.
7. Financial Reward
While actuaries certainly work hard, they enjoy high financial reward. The average basic salary for a graduate last year was £28,571; this can rise to above £200,000 for senior positions. Check out the latest salary expectations on our careers advice page to compare the different salaries for each type of role.
As you can see, joining the actuarial profession means you are joining a hugely prestigious industry; that means you are constantly challenged and gives you the opportunity to make a positive impact.