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-   -   Insurance vs Consulting (http://www.actuarialoutpost.com/actuarial_discussion_forum/showthread.php?t=105718)

Ace2415 03-27-2007 11:46 PM

Insurance vs Consulting
 
I currently have an internship with an insurance company, but looking long-term, it seems like consulting firms have higher salaries. I wanted to start out in insurance because I feel they are more committed to getting you through the exams plus the work weeks are not as long on average.

Does anyone have any experience with a situation similar to this?

actexp 03-28-2007 08:59 AM

that is a very common scenario. usually it is easier to pass exams in insurance company setting (better support/formal student programs) than in a consulting environment where you are more likely to be called upon to work longer hours on occasion. Lots of actuaries jump after getting asa or fsa, using initial insurance employer as more of a training ground. Only danger of this approach is that you not learning consulting type skills in the meantime, which can make the transition harder.

AG 03-28-2007 09:06 AM

Insurance companies are more hand-holding, typically. That might be less true than it used to be, but pretty much still is. Consulting as I know it is sink-or-swim, pull yourself up by your boostraps kind of learning, the kind that makes really for a really strong background. That said, exams are easier to take in insurance; don't sweat the transition to consulting.

DW Simpson 03-28-2007 09:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ace2415 (Post 2023292)
it seems like consulting firms have higher salaries.

...

head over to the consulting side to make the big bucks?

If you're good, you will get paid on either side.

DrNO811 03-28-2007 09:22 AM

People like you are why insurance companies should have a contract clause that requires X years of work after attaining associatship or fellowship or a buyout term that allows you to compensate the company for all the time and money they wasted on you.

asdfasdf 03-28-2007 09:24 AM

If you start in consulting you will have better clients, better work etc when you are credentialed than if you switch. If you switch at FSA you'll have to stay in insurance consulting, because you can't switch to pension consulting at that level with no pension knowledge, you could probably switch to healthcare consulting.

Maine-iac 03-28-2007 09:29 AM

When you get your first job, look around at what you are doing, what those ranking above you are doing, what consultants you work with are doing, etc. Learn about the profession.

In broad general strokes, there are reasons why the average consultant makes more than the average insurance company actuary (though there are very well compensated people on both sides). The extra income is compensation for the required travel of the boring variety, the need to beat the bushes to drum up contracts, the need to be professionally visible (volunteer for the societies, make presentations at meetings, etc. to generally be a "face" for your firm) that are part of the consultant's life.

You may find this sort of stuff appealing, or the thought of it may cause a shivering fit, but you need to look around, learn a little, and then assess your suitability for the consulting life, not just the salary, before deciding on your ultimate career path.

DW Simpson 03-28-2007 09:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DrNO811 (Post 2023440)
People like you are why insurance companies should have a contract clause that requires X years of work after attaining associatship or fellowship or a buyout term that allows you to compensate the company for all the time and money they wasted on you.

http://www.actuarialoutpost.com/actu...84#post1741784

http://www.actuarialoutpost.com/actu...d.php?t=105733

WWSituation 03-28-2007 09:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DrNO811 (Post 2023440)
People like you are why insurance companies should have a contract clause that requires X years of work after attaining associatship or fellowship or a buyout term that allows you to compensate the company for all the time and money they wasted on you.

Good luck with that. Let us know how it works out.

General Apathy 03-28-2007 09:47 AM

Yes, that is a great idea


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