For over one hundred years we’ve worked in the best interests of our members. Our Actuarial teams use their mathematical expertise to balance risk and prediction while ensuring that our members are protected, and our business continues to thrive. We caught up with Saurabh Agrawal, Head of With-Profits Management, who joined us in 2022 with a wealth of Actuarial experience. Here he shares his journey so far, the importance of balancing analytical skills with human benefit, and how NFU Mutual supports him to balance family life with future opportunities.

You’re an experienced Actuary, can you tell us about your career journey so far?
After gaining a master’s degree in Actuarial Science and working for an investment consultancy, I decided to move in-house and work for an actuarial department within an insurance company. I then moved to India for family reasons and on my return to the UK I took a senior role with my previous company. Despite having a successful career, I felt I needed a change, and this brought me to NFU Mutual.

What attracted you to NFU Mutual?
I was looking for a fresh challenge when I discovered the Head of With-Profits role, working in life insurance which is an interesting area and requires core actuarial skills. Crucially however, we don’t focus solely on risk or With-Profits, but the business as a whole, which gives me great exposure in other areas. Through my network, I’d heard that NFU Mutual were a great place to work, this was supported by online reviews and seeing that they’d received the Gallup Exceptional Workplace award for eight consecutive years. I was interested in taking up a role where I could use my skills to make a tangible difference to customers’ lives. I’ve been here a little over a year now and my experience has exceeded those early expectations.

How is working as an Actuary different at NFU Mutual?
NFU Mutual is a truly purpose-led business, which is extremely rare. There are no shareholders, and the focus is on doing the best for members, not on profitability or marketability. They have true dedication to people and keep members at the heart of every decision. It’s a different kind of challenge because we’re called upon to think about the individual that each change could affect. For example, how would a change in bonus rates affect an 80-year-old member, or a member with special needs? It has enabled me to work in a more meaningful way.

This member-first approach works. The business is in an extremely strong capital position and commercial opportunities are growing all the time. From an employee perspective, mutuality results in a better culture and there are a lot of long serving employees across the business. Many have been here for ten, twenty or even thirty years.

There is a huge respect for people’s individual circumstances. I have a family, so the hybrid working, which allows me to work up to 80% of my hours from home, is extremely important to me. This kind of support counts for a lot when trying to balance work and family life.

What are the progression opportunities like?
There is a lovely, inclusive culture here. At every level, progression is encouraged. And everyone wants to help each other to succeed. In my experience in big businesses as an actuary, it’s easy to be pigeonholed into a role. There’s a huge breadth of learning opportunities and you’re able to own your own personal development plan and shape your career how you wish. I’m a believer that it’s important to keep learning and to surround yourself with people who encourage your growth. I’m on the leadership team and involved in key strategic decisions. Because I am surrounded by some of the most talented leaders in the industry, I am learning from them as I continue my own career journey.

What words of advice would you give to someone who’s thinking of applying?
This is a great place to come if you want to build a full and varied career. You’ll be exposed to the best learning opportunities and encouraged by experienced leaders in an inclusive environment to set you up for every success.

Interested in becoming an Actuary at NFU Mutual? Take a look at our currect opportunities.