Actuary Career Information: What Actuaries Do

hero-actuary-career-informationActuaries are at the heart of the insurance industry. Experts in statistics, business and finance, actuaries use their knowledge to assess risk in order to formulate policies and minimize costs of risk for the insurance industry.

Data is the essence of the job of an actuary, as they gather, assemble and analyze information to estimate the probability and likely costs of events such as death, sickness, injury, disability, or loss of property.

Those choosing an actuary career use data in such areas as pension and other retirement asset management; home, automobile and other areas of the insurance industry. Their expertise is essential in helping insurance companies design coverage plans, and in helping a wide spectrum of companies decide how they should invest their assets in order to maximize returns and minimize risks to those investments.

Where Do Actuaries Work?

Although 60 percent of actuaries work in the insurance industry, some work in these environments:

  • Financial or accounting institutions
  • Corporations managing financial asset investments
  • The government, managing the Medicare, Medicaid and other insurance programs
  • As consultants, who may work on a contract basis in any of these fields

Actuary Career Path

Entry Level

Types of Roles

  • Actuary, data analyst, life or health insurance underwriter

Getting There

  • Bachelor’s degree in mathematics, statistics or actuarial science, or a business-related field such as finance, economics or business, a strong background in mathematics; passing a series of professional examinations
  • Technology skills and experience (specifically in Microsoft Excel and PowerPoint)

Description

  • Marketing, underwriting, financial reporting and product development

Mid Level

Types of Roles

  • Pension fund manager, executive employee benefits officer, credit manager, insurance product manager

Getting There

  • All entry-level requirements
  • An MBA with a focus in finance or insurance
  • Completion the Associate or ACAS (Casualty Actuarial Society) level exam
  • Strong industry relationships and knowledge

Description

  • Manage data and analysis staff and projects
  • Develop policy and practices for insurance companies and businesses
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Senior Level

Types of Roles

  • Chief risk officer, chief financial officer

Getting There

  • Create and manage a corporate structure
  • Develop long-term plans for insurance companies, business and other financial institutions
  • Ensure and monitor federal compliance for clients
  • Strong industry relationships and knowledge

Description

  • Create and manage a corporate structure
  • Develop long-term plans for insurance companies, business and other financial institutions
  • Ensure and monitor federal compliance for clients
  • Lead teams of people and consultants

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