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What is an actuary?

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Who is an Actuary?

Actuaries are professionals who are associated with the assessment and management of risk in financial investments, insurance policies and any other areas where there is uncertainty. The field related to this profession is known as actuarial science. Many public and private institutions hire Actuaries to determine the relative risk associated with any kind of decisions.


What are the roles/responsibilities of an Actuary?

The basic role of an Actuary is to use statistical and mathematical techniques to assess the probability of an event. Some of the common roles/responsibilities of an Actuary are:
• Compiling and gathering data on various factors to find information that will help in the analysis process.
• Reviewing of the compiled data to reveal useful patterns using advanced statistical methods and tools.
• Advising companies on how to adapt to risks by reviewing contracts, insurance plans, pension plans, policies, financial investments, etc.
• Creating reports for the stakeholders to understand the risks involved and the steps that should be taken.
• Providing expert testimony in lawsuits whenever required by clients or customers.
• Planning new methods or techniques to evaluate risks when traditional methods are not sufficient for certain circumstances.

What are the tools/skills associated with Actuarial Science?

• Good knowledge of data analytical and statistical models used for risk analysis.
• Hands-on experience with databases.
• Proficient in popular analytical software/tools like MS Excel, SAS, Matlab, etc.
• Basic skills in some of the programming languages used in analytical software like Python, C++, R, Visual Basic, etc.
• Strong analytical and problem-solving skills.
• Excellent communication, presentation and interpersonal skills.

What are the career outcomes after an Actuarial certification?

• Senior Business Analyst
• Chief Actuary
• Investment Consultant
• VP, Finance/Chief Financial Officer

What is the average salary of an Actuary?

The average salary for an Actuary is approximately ₹ 7.5 Lacs per annum and with the more experience, skills or a certification, one can have a higher earning potential compared to the industry average. A certified professional normally has a better chance for further career progression in comparison to someone who is not certified.

What are the advantages of becoming an Actuary?

Actuarial science is a reputable job profile in the finance, banking and insurance industries. Following are some of the advantages of becoming one:
• If you are good at crunching numbers and making statistical analysis, Actuarial Science is the perfect job for you and offers a lot of challenges.
• As an Actuary, you will be in a position where you make important decisions which will lead to a success or failure of a financial transaction. Hence, it offers a certain sense of job satisfaction as being a part of something that creates impact.
• Becoming an Actuary takes a lot of patience and demands a high level of quality education. This is the reason, Actuary enjoys a good amount of reputation in the industry.
• The competitiveness of the work is very high and demands a high level of proficiency. This makes the average pay of an Actuary well above the average incomes of professionals in the finance industry.

Which profiles can go for an Actuarial position?

• Fresh Graduates/HSC passed
• Finance Executives/Accountants
• Credit Analyst/Financial Analyst
• Business Analyst

Who can become an Actuary?

Fresh graduates – Though it’s uncommon for fresh graduates to start as an Actuary, you can get opportunities if you have are a certified professional.
Naukri Learning offers various online courses that can help you in getting a certification from Institute of Actuaries of India (IAI), which conducts an Actuarial Common Entrance Test (ACET).

Non-experienced professionals – If you are a professional with no experience in the field, then it will be a difficult task for you to get a job as an Actuary. Such candidates usually go for a certification course to acquire the required skills and knowledge.

Experienced professionals – When you have the necessary experience and skills, it is always easy to get the job you are looking for. With the right experience in actuarial science, you can have easy chances of becoming an Actuary.

What are the eligibility criteria to become an Actuary?

To become an Actuary in India you will have to successfully pass the Actuarial Common Entrance Test (ACET), which is organised by the Institute of Actuaries of India (IAI). The ACET exam has four stages — Stage1 (Core Technical or CT), Stage 2 (Core Application or CA), Stage 3 (Specialist Technical or ST) and Stage 4 (Specialist Application SA). There are three levels of certification:
• Student member – A candidate becomes eligible for student member certification on passing Stage 1 in the ACET exam series.
• Associateship – A student member can become an Associate Member upon passing up to Stage 3 in the ACET exam series.
• Fellowship – A student member can earn Fellowship when it completes all the stages of the ACET exam series and also satisfies some of the required eligibility criteria.

Why are candidates going for an Actuary position?

With an internationally acclaimed certification, you can become a globally-accepted professional and work with some of the top organisations over the world. Some of the other reasons why candidates are going for an Actuary position are:

Fresh graduates
• Actuarial science offers a superior career path for fresh graduates. Even XIIth standard students can start a career in Actuarial Science, if they have good mathematical and statistical abilities, by being certified. This is why many candidates want to start a career in Actuary.

Finance Executives/Accountants
• Finance executives and accountants who want to give their career a boost can really make it big through Actuary. If they can become a certified professional, there are a lot of opportunities in some of the well-known organisations.

• Apart from providing a good career growth, the average salary can also jump up certain numbers as the average pay in Actuary is better than most entry-level jobs in the finance industry.

Business Analyst/Financial Analyst
• The number of financial analysts and business analysts in the market is great and most of them have the same skills set. Becoming a certified Actuary can certainly increase the market value of the professionals as the job competition is low.

Also, the career growth of an Actuary is better than business analysts and financial analysts.

What do recruiters look for in an Actuary candidate?
Recruiters usually look for the following points while hiring an Actuary:

Prior experience – Any prior experience in the field can make the recruiters interested in you. It is also great if you can have are certified by one of the governing bodies.
If you do not have any prior experience, a certification can help pave a way to your dream of becoming an Actuary.

Key Skills – Excel, SAS, Matlab, Python, R, statistical analysis, risk analytics, SQL, client management and clear communication.

What are the top recruiters that hire Actuaries?

There are a lot of prominent investment, insurance and finance companies that hire Actuaries, and if you are someone who is highly skilled, you can expect some of the top organisations calling out for you.
Some of the top companies that hire Actuaries are Tata AIA, Nielsen, AIG, KPMG, Ernst & Young and Macquarie Group.

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