Dan F.

Chief Actuary
Happy to mentor
Happy to be contacted

About me

Dan F.
United Kingdom

My employment

Chief Actuary
The Shipowners' Club
United Kingdom
Finance and consultancy
Medium-size business (50-249 employees)

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A day in the life of a Chief Actuary in the United Kingdom

While at York I knew I wanted to find a career that allowed me to utilise my mathematical skills and expertise.

Briefly describe the organisation you work for

A mutual insurer which specialises in marine liability insurance for small and specialist vessels

What do you do?

I work in all areas of non-life insurance actuarial work as required by the Club. This includes reserving (calculating how much money the Club should hold to pay future claims), capital management (calculating how much money the Club should hold as a "rainy day fund" given the risk and uncertainty it faces) and pricing (using statistical techniques to support the underwriters in setting the premiums).

Reflecting upon your past employment and education, what led you to your current career choice?

While at York I knew I wanted to find a career that allowed me to utilise my mathematical skills and expertise. After some research I learnt about the role of actuaries and thought it sounded like something I could be interested in. The Directory of Actuarial Employers on the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA) website (www.actuaries.org.uk) helped me find a list of employers who offered summer work experience placements. In the summer break between my second and third year at York, I completed an actuarial internership at a pensions consultancy firm. This led to an offer to join as an Actuarial Student once I had completed my final year. Part of the offer was support in studying to become a Fellow of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries. After a few years of working in pensions, I moved into the general insurance industry in 2013. I qualified as a Fellow in 2016.

Is your current job sector different from what you thought you would enter when you graduated?

Although I am still an Actuary, I started in pensions consultancy and now work in general insurance.

Describe your most memorable day at work

I spent a few months building a stochastic model in order to understand the impact of different reinsurance structures available to the Club. Presenting the results of this modelling to the Reinsurance Committee, which includes members of the board including the CEO, CFO and Underwriting Director, and the great feedback I got was very memorable. The model was a first for the Club and gave new insight they hadn't seen before.

What extracurricular activities did you undertake at university and what transferable skills did you develop through these?

I was a member of the James College Football Team - although it was more about the social element than the football! I made lots of great friends through the team who I am still in touch with today.

As previously mentioned I did a summer placement in a pensions counsultancy firm between my second and third year. This gave me fantastic experience of the day-to-day role of an actuary and confirmed it was a career I should pursue.

What top tips do you have for York students preparing for today’s job market and life after graduation?

Research the organisations you're applying to. Whenever I've interviewed graduates I've always been most impressed by those who appear interested in the organisation.

If you're interested in actuarial, particularly in general insurance, then nowadays an interest in data analysis using R or Python will put you in good stead.

Next steps...

If you like the look of Dan’s profile, the next steps are down to you! You can send Dan a message to find out more about their career journey. If you feel you would benefit from more in-depth conversations, ask Dan to be your mentor.

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