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Understanding The Actuarial Leaders of the Future

As part of their focus on supporting the actuaries of the future, Emerald Group has recently surveyed a selected group of young actuaries in Germany to understand their career goals and professional ambitions. Here, Sarah Schadek-Keane, Director of International Actuarial for Emerald Group, shares these findings, highlighting a range of essential considerations for anyone employing young actuaries.
Written on 12/21/23

Our work with young aspiring actuaries is one of the most interesting areas Emerald Group is involved in. We see at first hand the personal and professional ambitions of a very motivated group of people, focused on qualifications and determined to build skills that will shape their future careers.

Ambitious and Future-Focused

Make no mistake this group of individuals are very ambitious. They fully intend to progress into senior roles and nearly 75% of the young people we spoke to plan to study for additional qualifications. They are very aware of the future direction of the industry and recognise the importance of digital transformation and technology. There’s a clear focus on building knowledge in actuarial data science and risk management, with these being the most likely areas of future study and additional qualifications.  

Financial Expectations

Employees need to offer competitive salaries and benefits to attract talented young actuaries: 80% of our respondents highlighted this as a key driver in their decision to become an actuary and everyone we spoke to sees this as an essential part of an employer offer. That’s not surprising, but that’s not the whole story. Aspiring actuaries are telling us that companies also need to provide ongoing support with training and development, reflecting the ambition of this group to acquire further qualifications once they have initially qualified.

As newly qualified actuaries, over 90% of the young people we surveyed are looking for long-term career progression and, at Emerald Group, this is part of every conversation we have with a candidate. Employers who can map out a potential future journey for a new hire have a definite advantage here, as candidates assess a role and employer against their long-term goals. Matched with this, job security is a major draw to working within the industry and companies who can foster long term employment relationships may also be really appealing to candidates.

Heading Abroad

One of the most interesting revelations of our survey concerned international relocation. Many young actuaries aspire to work overseas, with a third of the people we spoke to having this as a current professional goal. Even if they’re not yet ready to relocate, more than half are already considering international relocation opportunities in their choice of employer. It’s encouraging to see that ambitious candidates continue to recognize the huge opportunities that international relocation can bring for their personal and professional goals.


It looks like one of the biggest changes we’ve seen in recent years continues to be popular with young employees. Flexible working is a fundamental requirement for the group we surveyed, with more than half of our survey respondents expecting hybrid working options from their employer. 

Values Matter

We talk to every client we work with about their company values and ethics, including their approach to social responsibility. The significance of this for our clients is clearly shared with their future employees. Nearly half of the young actuaries who responded to our survey considered the social responsibility values of their employer to be significant when choosing where to work. Candidates and clients all recognize the importance of being good corporate citizens, which is an encouraging sign for the ongoing focus on and prioritization of measures that support social responsibility.

Matching Expectations to Opportunities

Career progression and international opportunities, training support and flexible working sit alongside competitive salaries and benefits as essential factors in recruiting the best candidates and are essential elements in shaping the actuarial roles of the future.

*In Autumn 2023, Emerald Group asked a group of fifty aspiring and newly qualified young actuaries from across Germany to share their professional ambitions, career paths, motivations and future goals.  We are grateful to our survey participants for their valuable and insightful contributions.

Whatever your level of qualification, Emerald Group can help you find the role that’s right for you. If you’re looking to build your actuarial team, we can source candidates from across the spectrum of actuarial experience. To discuss this further, please email Emerald Group at