How to Get a Job as an Actuary

Gina Deveney
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Actuary jobs involve analyzing risk using mathematics and financial theories. Actuaries also provide the statistical probability and cost associated with certain events. These professionals are employed by businesses and corporations in a number of fields. Find out more about how to get a job as an actuary to see if you have what it takes.

To get an actuary job, you must have a bachelor degree from a reputable educational institution. Many schools offer actuary science degree programs, but a degree in a quantitative discipline, such as mathematics, computer science, finance, engineering or statistics, also satisfies the educational requirement to become an actuary. However, some employers do hire people with degrees in other fields if their employment experience aligns with the requirements of an actuary position.

In addition to a college degree, entry-level actuary jobs require the completion of at least one actuary exam. There are seven different kinds of exams. Some of the exams test competency in more than one area, and others test specific knowledge. Passing all of the exams does not necessarily improve your chances of getting an actuary job. A candidate with relevant job experience is considered to be more valuable than a candidate who is capable of passing all of the tests. Ultimately, it is best to complete only two actuary exams until you have gained some employment experience.

Job experience is essential to getting a job as an actuary. The best way to do this is to complete internships while you are completing your degree. It is important to intern in different areas to make your job experience more diverse. For example, intern with one company that specializes in pensions, and then choose another company that deals with property and casualty insurance.

Although education and job experience satisfy most of the requirements for getting an actuary job, it is also important to develop other skills that your education does not cover. Analyzing and minimizing risk involves the use of numbers and statistics, but it also requires the knowledge of human behavior and the ability to come up with creative solutions to problems. Focus on developing the skills that are not covered in your degree program. In addition, it is becoming increasingly important for actuaries to be proficient in a number of computer programs and have programming skills. Satisfy the elective requirements of your program by taking a few advanced computer classes to enhance your skill level.

Developing the skills and qualifications necessary to get an actuary job takes several years of hard work and dedication. However, actuary jobs are expected to remain in demand, so this is a stable field to enter. Consider all of the requirements of becoming an actuary to decide if you have what it takes to analyze and minimize risk.

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