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The less trodden path

Pashupati Saha |

Actuarial scientists are risk experts, employing their mathematical skills to measure the probability and risk of future events, juggling complex data and making sense of it to inform business decisions. While the traditional areas of life insurance and pensions are still at the heart of the actuarial profession, general insurance, investment and risk management are seeing very strong growth, indeed general insurance is now the second most popular area for the student base. 

There are basically three societies all over the world providing actuarial courses in India. These include, Institute of Actuaries in India, Institute and Faculty of Actuary, UK and Society of Actuaries of USA. The present system allows and encourages students to opt for inter-examination among the IAI and IFoA societies. A fellow member of The Institute of Actuaries of India is referred as an actuary. This membership is achieved by passing examinations at various stages and fulfilling other conditions as required from time-to-time. 

The examinations can be taken after being enrolled as a member. A graduate with a major subject in mathematics, statistics, econometrics, engineering and actuarial sciences are required to enroll. To become an associate or fellow of the IFoA, students must pass exams, complete a number of practical modules, and acquire a satisfactory level of work-based skills, which means that the average qualification time is currently three to six years. Also, for those who may not aspire to become an associate, there is the CAA qualification and membership grade — the first actuarial membership qualification at this level in the world.    

”Every business is subject to risks so an actuarial career offers many options. Understanding how businesses operate is vital for actuaries, but what really set them apart are their strong technical skills.  Even more important is their ability to apply this to real business issues and to communicate difficult topics to non-specialists. Regulators are also seeking comfort in the skills of individuals at all levels in financial services and employers are looking to improve standards and fulfill their regulatory obligations,” said Saket Saraogi, career ambassador, Institute and Faculty of Actuary, United Kingdom and founder, Scube Tutorials, Kolkata. Many actuarial job opportunities exist in India and there are three areas where it is most in demand. This includes, traditional actuarial roles in the insurance industry, working for multinational insurance companies and actuarial consulting firms in the outsourcing set ups and non-traditional areas that are expanding such as risk management and information technology. 

The numbers of students are even higher. Currently 57 per cent of student members are based outside the UK, with 22 per cent of those based in India. Research of the employment market suggests that those who hold a professional actuarial qualification can often command a salary premium because of their regulatory framework.  In India, as in many countries around the globe, there is an increase in demand for skilled actuaries as multinationals grow and expand their businesses into new territory.  If you have the mathematical and analytical interest that is at the core of the actuarial profession, you will find a very rewarding and varied career at the heart of the financial.

“The problem is that many people are unaware of the course, and often we find students who themselves aren’t well versed with the details of the course. Also, not many people know how to prepare themselves for the test and be successful. With this view in mind, we have come out with Scube Tutorials, where we provide actuarial science tuition at extraordinarily low costs by utilising innovative methods. We provide correct tools to clear the actuarial exams. We understand that every student is special and has a different need and capacity to learn. We have a panel of teachers who specialise in their subject and provide classroom training for CT series and Actuarial Common Entrance Test,” Saraogi added. The entrance to IAI, called Acet, is hold in two cycles every year — one in June and December. The examination is scheduled on 12 April and the registration starts from 25 January.