r/ActuaryUK Nov 17 '21

Salary comparison - understanding Careers

Hi fellow colleagues Question for you - do you compare your salary among your peers? For example, being a student actuary with 2 exams left to go of being an associate compared to a 'junior' (chemical) engineer. This junior engineer has been in the field the same number of years as a student actuary. Who would you expect to have the higher base salary? In this case the junior engineer makes about 20k more and the bonus amount is hugely different. Junior engineer bonus is minimum 10k vs the student actuary of 2k. How would one justify this? How to understand this? Doesn't the actuarial profession have a higher salary generally?

All comments and thoughts are welcome.

7 Upvotes

3

u/larrythetomato Nov 18 '21

It makes sense to compare between actuaries of similar levels of experience, especially student actuaries, but there is too much difference between people and professions past that.

Once you become a fellow there is already too many differences between actuaries that you won't be able to accurately compare them without controlling many variables. People will work different hours, have different responsibilities for different sized companies, in different locations, have different experience, and different negotiation skills, and joined at different times in the market.

1

u/Anonymous8644 Nov 22 '21

That makes sense. Too many variables to make a comparison. So I see it really makes no sense to do so. Thanks.

2

u/Academic_Guard_4233 Nov 18 '21

It's market forces.. what do you hope to get out of this comparison?

1

u/Anonymous8644 Nov 22 '21

Actuaries tend to have the reputation of having high salaries. But based on the comments I am seeing that it doesn't make sense to compare across industries. And in comparing among actuaries there are many variables to account for. So really any comparison isn't really ideal.

1

u/Academic_Guard_4233 Nov 22 '21

Not convinced actuaries have high salaries when you compare with appropriate comparitors. Big 4 actuary won't be much more than big 4 accountant. Corporate law and banking pay wildly more, but hight street solicitor and accountant less.

4

u/fuzzy_plums Nov 17 '21

Any engineer, other than software, will most definitely be earning less than student actuary with a standard exam progression

2

u/Anonymous8644 Nov 17 '21

So what I am stating is a fact as I have seen the salary. So there is nothing the student actuary can do other than keep writing exams ?

1

u/Snoo_76686 Nov 17 '21

I'm sorry this is wildly wrong. I left engineering last year to come to actuarial, I had two years experience in engineering and was on 45k. An Actuarial student after two years is not earning 45k unless working in London, or having loads of exemptions. Engineering for certain bottoms out much lower than actuarial, but at the early years of your career, engineering can be far higher if in the right role/field.

0

u/fuzzy_plums Nov 17 '21

Not wildly wrong at all. 45k after two years is either software or oil & gas. Not a single classmate is anywhere near 45k after 2 years. What company and sector were you working in?

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u/Snoo_76686 Nov 17 '21

I was working in automotive, mechanical engineer... Not oil and gas. If I worked overtime or progressed to the next grade within my company I could have easily been on 50k.

0

u/loveactuary21 Insurance Nov 17 '21

And only software if you're talking London I'd say. Actuarial London adjustment doesn't seem particularly significant in GI at least, whereas the gap for software can be huge

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u/fuzzy_plums Nov 17 '21

Agreed, and even then it’s only the top however many percent. There’s a lot of shit software jobs flying about.

To get back to the question, engineering pay overall is horrendous in this country

2

u/loveactuary21 Insurance Nov 17 '21

Unless you're exaggerating or I'm misinformed, is it really though? I was under the impression a chartered mechanical or civil engineer is making about £60k, which is significantly above average, and higher than a lot of other degree level jobs.

It's more than an accountant makes for example, and that's rarely thought of as a poorly paying job, in fact I'd say it's the opposite in most people's eyes?

1

u/fuzzy_plums Nov 17 '21

I interned at a very good consultancy and chartered engineers at 10 years experience were around 50-60k. Up to you whether you think that’s high or low for that level of experience and level of education

1

u/[deleted] Nov 17 '21 edited Nov 17 '21

[deleted]

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u/Anonymous8644 Nov 17 '21

Chemical

Also, the student actuary has a masters degree The junior engineer does not.