How to Increase Your Actuarial Starting Salary
The actuarial job market is competitive, and that can put pressure on aspiring actuaries. You might feel like you have to take any actuarial job you can get.
But, that’s not true!
What if I told you that you could improve your chances of getting a great starting salary and get multiple job offers and even bigger bonuses?
It’s all about being the top candidate that employers are looking for.
That doesn’t mean just passing a bunch of exams.
The actuarial job market is competitive, and passing exams just isn’t enough to stand out from the competition.
Instead, you want to become a top candidate with the technical skills and relevant experience to back up your actuarial exams.
Employers value top candidates.
After all, they have all the skills and experience to do their job well and will need less training than other applicants. So, employers would be more likely to offer them a job and a higher salary, which would lead to bigger bonuses.
This creates a snowball effect, where your salary grows even faster!
So, how do you know if you’re a top candidate? And, if you aren’t a top candidate yet, how do you get there? Keep reading to find out!
Are You a Top Candidate?
Entry-level actuarial candidates can be broken down into four main categories depending on how many desirable actuarial skills they have.
You could be anything from a beginner candidate, who has just decided the actuarial career is for you, to a top candidate with all the skills and experience that employers will value.
The pyramid below represents the different types of candidates, with beginner candidates making up the largest portion of aspiring actuaries.
As you gain more of these in-demand qualifications, skills, and experience and become a better candidate, you’ll graduate from each level and move up this pyramid.
So, which candidate are you?
Here’s a brief rundown. Once you’ve done everything under each level, you’ll move on to the next level!
- Deciding if the actuarial career is right for you
- Learning what it takes to become a fully qualified actuary
- Getting your questions answered so you can make an informed choice
- Learning to be an Excel ninja
- Learning a programming language
- Getting related actuarial experience through an internship or stepping stone position (Hint: If you don’t know what a stepping stone position is, this video will teach you all about them!)
- Working to pass your first actuarial exam
- Getting real-world technical experience with Excel and a programming language
- Learning about actuarial terms, concepts, and current issues
- Maximizing your related experience by incorporating actuarial duties into your job to benefit the company (for example, automating Excel functions to save the company time and money)
- Passed your second and third exams!
By the time you’ve done all these things, you’ll be ready to start applying for actuarial jobs with great starting salaries!
The video below has more in-depth information about the types of actuarial candidates. You’ll learn exactly what each level looks like and how to move to the next one.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by everything that you need to do to become a top candidate, don’t worry.
It takes time and effort to get there, but when you go step-by-step, you can definitely achieve it!
For extra support and resources to help you get all these skills and become a top candidate, check out the Actuary Accelerator Community (AAC) here!
Top Candidates Get Hired
Naturally, employers want to hire the best possible candidates; the top candidates.
Top candidates have passed exams, and gained relevant technical skills and experience in related positions.
When you have all of those qualifications, you will stand out!
That means that if you want to have the best chance of getting an actuarial job, you have to be a top candidate! In fact, once you have all of those desirable skills, getting an actuarial job is practically inevitable.
Members of the Actuary Accelerator Community (AAC) have proven that this strategy works. We’ve seen them get interviews, get multiple job offers, and get the actuarial job they dreamed of – all by becoming top candidates.
Bryton is an example of a top candidate. He was able to transition from his role as a math teacher to his first actuarial position by gaining the relevant skills and qualifications needed to rise above the competition!
In the interview below, he discusses his previous experience, technical skills, common interview questions, and how he transitioned from a 4-month actuarial internship contract to a full-time actuarial position.
You can use his journey to guide you on your own journey to becoming a top candidate!
Even the data says that becoming a top candidate is the best way to get an actuarial job.
I studied 100 current entry-level actuarial job postings and discovered that top candidates would be eligible for any of those positions.
I mean, think about it! By becoming a top candidate, you’re gaining all the skills and experience that employers are looking for. Why wouldn’t they want to hire you?
That’s why top candidates don’t struggle to find actuarial jobs.
They know what employers are looking for and they put in the work to make themselves the best possible candidate for the job.
Check out the video below to see the data I collected, and how you can use it to streamline your actuarial journey and get your first job faster.
Top Candidates Get Great Starting Salaries
If an actuarial employer had to choose between hiring a top candidate and an intermediate candidate, which one would get the job offer? Which one would be offered a higher salary?
It’s obvious, right? The top candidate!
Plus, if you get multiple job offers, you’ll have negotiation power.
Basically, if one employer offers you $50,000, but another offers you $55,000, you can go back to the first company and tell them about the higher offer. They might offer you a higher salary to match, or give you other bonuses to make the job worthwhile.
That’s how valuable top candidates are!
When you have all the skills and experience that employers are looking for, they want you and will go quite far to attract you to their team.
You should think about yourself the same way. As a top candidate, you provide tons of value to your employer. Be confident in your value and make sure that you’re compensated fairly.
Higher Starting Salaries = Bigger Bonuses!
Getting a higher starting salary means bigger bonuses.
Aspiring actuaries usually get a bonus or raise at the end of the year and when they pass an actuarial exam. These are usually calculated as a percentage of your current salary.
So, if you start with a higher salary, you’ll get bigger bonuses and raises too!
This means that your salary will increase at a faster rate.
If you’re looking for more tips on maximizing your salary, this post shows you exactly which factors impact your actuarial salary and what you can do right now to increase your earnings!
So, what should you do next to reap these great benefits?
First, you should take this quiz to find out which level of candidate you are.
That will help you figure out if you’re already a top candidate. If you aren’t, you’ll learn exactly what you need to do to become one, so you can have a higher starting salary when you start looking for your first actuarial job.
Becoming a top actuarial candidate is the best way to increase your starting salary. but it is hard work to get there.
Don’t worry, though!
Whether you’re just starting your actuarial journey or have been struggling to find an actuarial job, the Actuary Accelerator Community (AAC) has something for you!
You’ll find resume and interview courses to help you get that first entry-level position sooner. You’ll even find technical skills training, study materials, and a group of mentors and aspiring actuaries to answer all your questions and support you along the way.
If you’re ready to commit 100% to the actuarial career and potentially maximize your earnings, you can go here and learn all about the Actuary Accelerator Community.