How is the work-from-home movement impacting actuaries?

New survey suggests many are working increased hours

How is the work-from-home movement impacting actuaries?

Insurance News

By Kenneth Araullo

A recent survey involving actuaries suggests that while hybrid and home working have broadly improved work-life balance, they have also led to increased working hours for many.

Conducted by recruitment specialists Sellick Partnership, the survey has highlighted the changing landscape of work practices among actuarial professionals since the pandemic.

The findings, which gathered opinions from over 600 actuaries, revealed that 75% of respondents reported a positive change in their work-life balance due to the flexibility offered by hybrid or remote working setups.

Despite this, a significant 63% of participants also noted they work longer hours from home compared to their time in the office.

The study also examined the distribution of office attendance, revealing that 37% of actuaries are present in the office for at least two days each week. Only 4% of respondents are required to be in the office four to five days a week, indicating a substantial shift towards more flexible working arrangements.

Preference for work location varied among the professionals, with 54% favouring a hybrid model and 36% preferring to work entirely from home. In contrast, only 9% expressed a preference for full-time office work.

Further insights from the survey indicated that 51% of actuaries feel more productive working from home. However, the transition to remote work poses challenges, particularly for new hires. Approximately 65% of respondents believe that hybrid working has a negative impact on the integration and training of new staff.

Moreover, 28% have observed a decline in their own development of soft skills, such as communication and interpersonal abilities, due to less face-to-face interaction.

The survey also revealed that 43% of actuaries work at least six hours beyond their contracted hours each week, with 14% working an additional 30 hours or more. Additionally, 22% of the respondents live more than 50 miles from their base office, with 10% residing over 100 miles away.

Hannah Cottam (pictured), CEO at Sellick Partnership, commented on the findings and highlighted a clear positive impact from hybrid and remote working arrangements.

“Even better is that they’ve had such a profound impact on their work-life balance,” Cottam said. “However, the findings also shed light on the challenges posed by remote work, with over half of professionals reporting longer hours worked from home which could be down to the lack of travel involved in their days, or the ease that comes with staying logged on.”

“As we navigate these evolving dynamics, it's imperative for employers to tailor strategies that not only enhance flexibility but also mitigate potential drawbacks. This data highlights the importance of understanding employee needs and preferences in crafting sustainable and inclusive work environments,” Cottam said.

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