What is it like working and studying in RSA’s Actuarial Development Scheme?
RSA provides an ideal environment to start your actuarial journey. Their scheme is a very supportive one which aims to help you achieve your best. In terms of exam support you are provided with a generous amount of study time, tutorials, a wide variety of study material and mentoring from senior students. Equally importantly though, is that the team culture is one that fully embraces the study work balance. Many of the team members have been through the same journey as you so people are very considerate around Actuarial exams. This flexible work environment allows you to fit in your studying in a way that is most suited to you. Not only this but working alongside other students means that advice is always readily available and people are happy to discuss any questions you may have.
The scheme works on a rotation system which means that you have the opportunity to experience several different areas of insurance. This first-hand experience helps you to develop a career path that you enjoy and are most suited to. It ensures a more comprehensive knowledge of the different teams within the company and how everything pieces together, this insight can prove invaluable in providing context and understanding in all of your roles. In addition it provides a great opportunity to learn from others who may have rotated differently, providing a collaborative atmosphere with widely skilled and well-rounded colleagues.
What is your current role?
Currently I work in the Commercial side of the business on case pricing. This involves pricing more bespoke commercial risks by looking at individual experience or trying to compare to similar risks. My work is split between pricing schemes and individual risk managed cases at a UK and Global level. All of the work can really differ case by case due to the individuality of risks and I am constantly being given new pieces of work that are different from the one before. This means that every week can be quite different and you can’t always predict the projects that will come up. I’m regularly faced with new and different challenges so I’m always learning, which helps to thoroughly test my knowledge and further my understanding. I also get to regularly interact with different stakeholders in the company allowing me to make lots of business connections.
I have thoroughly enjoyed my rotation so far as I have felt it has been hugely interesting and consistently versatile. In my role I was given a lot of responsibility and opportunities for independent work early on. Whilst this is designed to push you, I always felt I had the right amount of support from my manager and the team. I also found that I was being challenged as a real learning technique, which challenged me to think about the next step and to constantly be seeking a more analytical view. I benefitted from being pushed to always think ahead and consider the implications of what your results really mean, before long this starts to become a natural thought process. I felt this really helped me develop my skills and provided a strong foundation to the way I work and I find this style of work and my role very refreshing.
What do you enjoy about working at RSA?
RSA has a very warm and cooperative work environment that is perfect for facilitating learning and idea sharing. People within the company are always more than happy to make time for you or take you through their roles. Within RSA there is a large emphasis on learning and self-development which is strongly encouraged by your managers from the start. It very much feels like a two way relationship, where they want to work with you to enable you to achieve your best and gain as much as you can from your work. This can include open conversations about your role, what you enjoy, where you’d like to improve and what you would like to learn. They then try their best to tailor your roles and get you involved in projects suited to your own goals. This allows you to have a say in your career and ensures that you gain maximum exposure to everything your rotation could offer.
Do you have any advice for somebody wanting to work in Insurance?
Getting an internship is really the best way to get to know a company culture and get a real feel for the working environment. It gives you first hand insight into whether you can picture yourself working there in the future. It also helps you identify the areas of insurance that you would or wouldn’t like to work in as reading about a job and actually doing it can be two very different things. I joined the graduate scheme following a summer internship in my penultimate year of University, which is how RSA selects its graduates. I really enjoyed my internship and it gave me a good idea of what to expect, meaning I was excited and far less nervous when joining as a graduate. During my internship my team was very proactive in arranging meetings with people from all over the company to help me gain as much background and knowledge about RSA and insurance. This really helped me to use first-hand experiences to identify areas I would like to work in in the future. Even now in my new role I feel I benefit from being familiar with other parts of the business.