Tom, Actuarial Trainee



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My job

Since I’ve been at Mercer I’ve found my job challenging and interesting and fulfilling. I like what I do. I like the people that I work with. I enjoy working at Mercer.


I’ve learnt a variety of things since being at Mercer, obviously picked up a lot of technical skills that relate to the work I have to do but then I’ve also learnt more general skills such as time management and being responsible for the work that I’m doing. That’s been important because it’s good to feel that the work that you get given to do is yours. 

The training

I think the training and development at Mercer is brilliant. It’s extensive, it’s varied and it continues for your first 18 months of being here. There’s the side of it that develops you as an employee in terms of the skills you need in your line of business, consulting skills, skills with Excel, technical skills but at the same time personally, I have been training and I’ve been sitting exams for the Actuarial qualification. That’s hard work. There’s two sittings a year, often two exams per sitting and it’s hard to sometimes juggle working and studying because you can’t just stop your full time job because you’ve got an exam in a few weeks. So that’s probably the hardest bit but it’s fulfilling, it’s challenging.


The support at Mercer’s been really good. In terms of the day to day work that you do, there’s always someone nearby who knows how to do what you’re doing so there’s never any fear that what you’re doing is so unique that you won’t have any help and you haven’t got to panic on that front.

My future

In the longer term I suppose, I’d obviously like to develop my relationship with the people I’ve started working with already, take on more responsibility and end up going towards a more client facing role because at the moment we’re learning the skills and I would like to take them out and use them. Similarly I also need to develop my study side of my job. I need to continue passing my exams, moving them through and then by the end of it obviously, the ultimate aim is to qualify as an actuary.

Working at Mercer

The best thing about working at Mercer is the people I work with because obviously in a week you spend most of your time in the office so it’s obviously important part. If you get on with the people you work with, you’re going to be happier in general. That makes for a more comfortable working atmosphere.

The key to success

I think the main skills you should possess to be successful at Mercer are to be flexible and reliable. You’ll obviously be technically able but since we work in fairly small client teams and on a number of them, you might be working with one person on one team but someone else on the other team in exactly the same position so it’s important that you can do the work how they want it rather than how you’re used to doing it.


I think in terms of the application process itself, it’s important to remember that most people who will be applying will be similarly able academically. They will be generally bright, so it’s important to remember how you can differentiate yourself from others, what your others skills are, your teamwork, that sort of thing. How can you set yourself apart from everyone else who’ll be applying.


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Actuarial Trainees advise clients on the design, funding and administration of retirement plans.