In today's materialistic world, the position in which you stand in the society will depend on many goods and commodities that you have and the quality of the same. Naturally, all of that will be dependent on the amount of money you make. Now, naturally, when it comes to buying larger things, (say a car or a house) one needs to invest money. The wiser you are at it, the higher will be your chances of making big money.
In order to make the most out of your money, you will have to take certain risks while investing your money. Now, which of the risks are worth taking and which ones are not is a million dollar question. After all, no one would want to lose their hard-earned money.
Thus, it is very important for individuals to come up with theories that will be able to access the risk of potential events. These theories are a combination of mathematical, statistical and financial concepts. This is all the way more important for firms and organisations because there the money involved will be much higher.
The people who carry out such analysis are known as actuaries. Read on to know more about the same.
• Job Duties
The first step in their work would involve compiling statistical data and estimating the probability of an event on the same. The event may range from personal ones like sickness, accident or death to that of large-scale ones like recession or natural calamities.
Once that is done, they come up with strategies to minimise the risk and maximise the profit. The strategies may be investment plans, pension schemes or simply insurance policies. Actuaries need to justify their strategies to the company executives, their clients and shareholders and government officials and they may take the help of charts, tables and reports to achieve the same.
• Educational Environment
One needs to have completed their three-year bachelor's degree in mathematics, statistics, economics or actuarial science in order to be eligible for this profession. This profession demands that candidates complete their coursework in addition to the bachelor's degree.
The coursework may range from that in corporate finance to that of programming languages, economics or the use of specific job-centric tools.
• Skill Set
The job roles of these people include using analytical skills to identify patterns and trends in complex data sets. This is what will enable them to predict the effect of the same on certain events. Most of the data that these people will work on will be digital in nature.
Thus, in order to do justice to this job, good analytical and mathematical skills with a fair amount of digital literacy is required.
Once actuaries come up with a proposal, they will have to effectively communicate the same to others. Hence, good interpersonal skills clubbed with a fair share of communicative aptitude are necessary here.
• Actuary Training
In a typical set-up, actuaries start off as trainees in organisations wherein they work with more experienced people. At this stage, they perform basic tasks like that of compiling data. As they grow under the mentorship of more experienced actuaries, they take to tasks like conducting research and documenting reports.
Over time, actuaries go for a number of certifications for career growth. The Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) and the Society of Actuaries (SOA) are the two professional bodies that offer certifications in this regard. Most organisations sponsor this type of certification for their employees.
In the Indian context, this is a newer profession and there is no well-defined salary structure. Most actuaries begin their career as interns wherein they earn something between INR 5000 to INR 10000 per month. The internship may be carried out either during the graduation period or after that.
Most full-time workers start off with a salary between INR 15,000 to INR 20,000 per month and the value rises with experience. As you gain more experience and a greater number of certifications, you will find yourself earning more.
• Job Types
It is important to realise that even as an actuary, there is a host of different areas that you can specialise in. You can choose to be a health insurance actuary or a life insurance actuary. In the corporate world, enterprise risk actuaries are the ones who make the most amount of money.
If you wish to be self-employed as an actuary, the smartest career path would be that of a property and casualty insurance actuary as these people will never run out of jobs. With more and more people being self-employed or working in the private sector, the demand for pension and retirement benefit actuaries is also increasing.
• Work Environment
Most of the jobs in the world of actuaries are in the private sector. The world of finance and insurance constitute 70% of the jobs for such people. Other than that, there is a whole host of professional, scientific and technical services for actuaries.
Most of the jobs here involve working during strict working hours with a day that is 8 or 9 hours in length. You will not have to work evening shifts or the weekends. Most of the jobs in this sector are based in the cities or the metropolitan areas. There are some jobs in the management of companies or enterprises as well.
Indeed in the Indian context, as of now, there is a bundle of job opportunities in this sector. In the coming years, the same is expected to rise. In such a situation this is the perfect time for an individual to make a plunge in this sector and pursue a successful career in the world of actuarial and predictive sciences.