Actuarial Science Interview Questions | What Will They Ask?

Actuary as a profession is gaining recognition across the globe. Subjects like statistics, mathematics, probability, and computer science are the core areas one must learn and practice to ace an actuarial science interview. Let us see some interview questions asked at Actuarial Science in this article.

Actuarial Science Interview Questions

Actuarial Science Interview Questions

Actuarial Science is the study of assessing financial risks using mathematical and statistical tools & methods. The preparation for an actuarial interview includes discrete variables that come into play. You must be professional, presentable, and proactive and have high communication skills. Some Comprehensive questions might be asked in interview as the Actuarial science works with industries such as insurance, finance, and investment. The process looks like this – initial screening interview, behavioral interview, and at last, a final interview.

Recruitment and selection in every company are based on the skills and competencies of the candidate. Actuarial science includes a list of exams that should be passed to progress in the profession. Every exam has its distinct value, so make sure you have appeared and passed at least two exams before appearing for the interview.

If you have an actuarial associate certification, the interview screening process is not competitive; however, the certifications take a considerable amount of time and effort to earn, but once you have earned them, you have a great deal of choice; the Companies will line up, and all you have to do is choose the best contract. 

The behavioral interview is the next step to assess your attitude towards various situations involved with the job of an actuary.  

The final interview has technical questions concerning the concepts and topics involved in actuarial science.

We will dive into the general questions asked by interviewers to an actuarial candidate appearing for the interview.

Division of Questions

  • General Questions
  • Aptitude Questions
  • Analytical Questions

General Questions

The Hiring Manager asks some general questions to know more about you; here, your name, details, educational background, and any prior work experience are requested. These questions are to gain a general understanding of a candidate’s attitude and character as well as to determine their suitability for the workplace culture. 

Some general questions asked are

  • Tell me about yourself.
  • What do you like about actuary as a profession?
  • What are your career goals?
  • Where did you attend college?
  • Are you interested in pursuing any advanced degree?
  • What was your last position?
  • If you were to give a critical analysis of yourself what strengths and weaknesses would be the top three?
  • How many exams have you cleared?
  • Why our company? What are your expectations from us?
  • Can you walk me through your typical day at work?
  • Why do you think you should be hired?

Aptitude Questions

It is obligatory to participate in a behavioral interview after your initial screening interview. The purpose is to determine whether or not you are qualified, prepared, and have the right attitude toward your career, your colleagues, your team, and life in general. Listed below are a few of them.

  • Have you ever had a conflict with your colleague? If yes, then why?
  • How do you deal with the pressure at work?
  • Describe a situation when you were having the hardest time dealing with a problem at work. How did you tackle it?
  • Describe to me a situation where you did not communicate with your team well and as a consequence has to face challenges.
  • Tell me if you have faced any unethical work environment in your prior jobs.
  • Tell me about any one situation where you did a good job as an actuary.
  • In a team of brilliant but lazy people, who might be absent on the day of the presentation, compared to average-performing people who are always there when you need them and actively participate in team activities. Whom will you choose and why?

Analytical Questions

To analyze if you are a fit candidate for the job, questions centering on actuarial concepts, tools, and hypothetical situations are put forward. Your education and skills as an actuary are determined here. The candidate should have a basic theoretical, conceptual and practical understanding of all the topics in and around actuarial science. He is expected to have an understanding of Excel and other actuarial software functions that are used by actuarial analysts. 

Almost every company provides employees with training in their job profiles; technical questions are somewhat less common.

  • The questions included in this segment are listed below.
  • Explain to me the role of an actuarial analyst in the insurance industry.
  • What is the process of gathering information for the data analysis process?
  • What is the use of actuarial tables?
  • How actuarial practice does differ in the insurance sector from the investment sector?
  • Can you list down some of the topics that you as an actuary should be proficient in?
  • Explain what a cumulative Distributive Function is.

Most Commonly Asked Questions

 We have listed some frequently asked interview questions to an actuarial science. Having a solid understanding of some crucial concepts (actuarial report, actuarial software, actuarial table, skills and competencies of an actuary) won’t prove useless, even though technical questions are unlikely to be asked during an interview. To assess your ability to work efficiently & effectively in the workplace culture and team great importance is given to aptitude and hypothetical situational questions.  

Don’t worry we have got answers so you can understand the interview procedure better.

Are you planning to prepare for the exams during the employment period? If yes, then how will you manage both?

Career plans and individual goals of an employee should align with the vision and mission of the company to utilize human resources efficiently and effectively. The hiring managers assess your perseverance, and dedication, as well as your time management, leadership, and development skills.

To answer this question, be specific about the exams you have completed and which you are preparing for. Show your preparedness to balance work-life chaos and mention the experience that the job will provide.

Example – “I have passed six exams and planning to prepare for the rest. The company will give me practical knowledge and experience that will be helpful in my preparations for future exams. I plan to manage my studies and job by making deadlines for both my team as well as myself. Every challenge and its solution will be a new one and that is what I am aiming to learn”

Identify the most commonly utilized actuarial software and also the ones in which you are a professional.

In actuarial practice, various software and technology are highly used. You have to be proficient in at least two of them. The question will test your eligibility to handle the software and technology that the company, at present, is using. Make sure to answer this in a proper and defined manner. Mention the common software used by the top companies and list the ones that you have worked with and are confident in. To answer more aptly you can research the technology that the company has used or is using currently. 

Example- “SAS, TAS, Prophet, Moses & Milliman Actuarial Software Solutions are some of the most commonly used actuarial software. Previously I’ve worked with Moses, SAS, and Milliman Actuarial Software. The latter is easy to use and has an extensive list of features. Moses is flexible and detailed but challenging for beginners. I like working with SAS the most as it is commonly used for statistical analysis and data visualization and provides in-depth insights with the help of its risk models.” 

What is an actuarial report?

This question is all about testing your basic technical knowledge. It’s an easy question to answer since you can use layman’s terms or stick with the definition you already know. As the interview shifts from an introductory stage to a more operational one, this kind of question is asked to ascertain your knowledge of the activities involved in the job of an actuary.

Example-“An actuarial report is a statement on the current and future conditions of a fund like pension or insurance. It can provide suggestions on addressing issues it identifies and also determine an insured’s projected loss. Using the actuarial report, we can assess the risks and factors that influence them if they relate to a specific one.”

What is a pivot table?

Again, this is an operational question. The hiring managers want to choose the best-fit candidates from a vast pool of talent & knowledge. There can be two or three technical questions but of a beginner level. For an actuary, your basics must be cleared and pruned well so that the company can acknowledge your effort and will. 

You can explain this with an example or just mention what a pivot table is, as the atmosphere of the interview asks. 

 Example-“A pivot table is a tool common in many business software used in summation of data in real-time. It consists of rows, columns, pages, and data fields. It can easily segment and consolidate a large amount of data in Microsoft Excel. Pivot table works well with SQL exports and allows the user to see how his data works.” 

Has there been any situation where you feel your profession to be not worthy? 

The hiring managers want to know about your attitude and dedication towards your job as well as your career. This is a question that tests your aptitude and you have to answer it positively. You cannot ignore it. You can say yes and list down a situation where you were stressed and were not able to maintain a healthy work-life balance because of a challenge at work. 

Very few people answer a ‘No’ to this question and if you are one of them make sure to give reasons for your answer.

Example-“Yes, every job deals with stress and workload pressure. I found myself at the same point earlier when I was faced with a challenge and it took me some time to find its solution. The excuse I gave myself then was that the job was not worth the time it demands. Of course, the company and job here play the most significant part but I think I was just a beginner and that’s why I found the task at hand way more difficult than it was.”

Pro Tips To Ace The Interview

Silence does not speak louder than words

If you do not know an answer politely inform the hiring managers that you will do further research on that. Do not remain silent or ignore the question. In a formal interview, acknowledging the mistakes is the key to a better understanding of the work environment offered by the company.

More is better

To eliminate your competitors try to learn something that they won’t probably know. Come prepared and try to learn something unique. You can illustrate the answer with the help of any prior work situation or challenge as your experience is what makes you unique.

Answers to the questions should be precise and short. Too much is never better.

Be formal

In the interview, stay away from any type of informal talk. The managers can from time to time throw some kind words to ease you but it doesn’t mean that the interview is taking an informal way. Do not fidget or do unnecessary actions in the middle of the interview.  

Read and research 

You have to research the company very thoroughly. Study the job profile you are appearing for. You can learn about many related aspects of the job you’ll be performing that will help you in forming your answers. 

The interview goes smoothly and successfully if you know the company and its vision & mission well. For example, you can study its competitors and the advantage it has over them. This will help you in answering “Why did you choose us not one of our competitors?”


Little do people know the high-income yielding and healthy work environment that actuarial science offers. It is one of the best jobs, especially if you are interested in finances and like playing with numbers and graphs. Risk assessment is the most crucial aspect of an actuary. The whole interview process of Actuarial science has a list of personal and aptitude questions to test your attitude toward different challenges and situations on the job.

Actuarial Science Interview Questions | What Will They Ask?

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