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How to become an Actuary

avg. starting salary

Want a career you can really count on? You should become an Actuary… Actuaries use their knowledge of business and economics, alongside other statistical theories, to analyse data and evaluate financial risks within an organisation. This enables them to predict the financial impact and probability of particular events, and provide strategic advice to non-specialists. They commonly work within banking, pensions, public and governmental corporations, or in various types of insurance – but it’s also possible for an Actuary to branch out into less conventional areas like climate change, genetics, or energy. Their specific duties will vary dependent on the field they’re based in, and could include tasks such as assessing pension scheme liabilities in relation to insurance pricing, or researching and analysing data based on specific groups of people. Other general duties for an Actuary could include:
  • Building statistical models using computers
  • Analysing various types of data
  • Monitoring and mitigating risk
  • Simplifying complex information to share with clients
  • Preparing and presenting periodic reports and presentations on findings
  • Ensuring systems comply with regulations
  • Keeping up-to-date with current events in business and economics

An advanced knowledge of maths, as well as excellent statistical analysis skills, is absolutely essential for anyone looking to become an Actuary. You’ll also need to be able to combine your mathematical mind with an in depth understanding of business and economics. However, if you often find yourself using complex technical terms without explanation, you may need to change your ways – without the ability to simplify complex terms and make them clearer for non-specialists, you’ll struggle to effectively get your recommendations across. An Actuary will also need to be:
  • Logical
  • Computer literate
  • Confident
  • An excellent communicator
  • A good problem solver
  • Meticulous
  • Technically minded
  • Responsible



Up to £30,000

Senior Actuary

Up to £70,000

Chief Risk Officer

Up to £185,000

"I’m an Actuary specialising in general insurance, having recently finished my actuarial training programme. To me, it’s a really exciting job. It’s all about assessing risks and essentially making sure an organisation doesn’t end up losing revenue due to an unforeseen economic downturn – or you know, bad decisions. My day-to-day involves a lot of research, analysis, and planning, alongside reporting and presenting my findings and sharing advice. It can be tough to tell people what to do when it comes to their business, but I find it’s all about laying the facts out on paper and just explaining it in black and white. And when I’m confident in my decisions, they are too."

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