Graduate success: Chloe Fazackerley, Corporate Actuary at AXA XL

Chloe Fazackerley

Chloe Fazackerley, Corporate Actuary for AXA XL, studied BSc (Hons) Actuarial Science with a Year in Industry and graduated in 2016. We caught up with Chloe to find out more about her role, her favourite memories of Kent,and her advice for students looking to get into the industry.

How do you feel your time at Kent prepared you for working in the industry?
The Year in Industry was particularly crucial, but I also learnt how important clear communication is – the Actuarial Practice module was a great bridge between theoretical topics and a real life career.

What did you learn in your degree that has been beneficial to you in your role?
Overall my degree gave me the base technical knowledge for a graduate actuarial role. If you come from a pure mathematics background you’ll be given guidance on these when you start your graduate role, but even just recognising terminology put first-day nerves at ease. And some of this is not just relevant to entry-level roles, the Statistics for Insurance module introduced concepts I continue to use on a daily basis.

What are your main responsibilities and tasks?
I am responsible for the reserving of the global Energy book, and I am also taking on responsibility for the Life, Accident & Health portfolio in 2022. My role involves leading reserve reviews for these lines of business, including detailed analysis, discussions with underwriting and claims teams on trends and exposures and peer reviewing work completed by reserving analysts. I also communicate results to key stakeholders across the business, including presenting at Board meetings and discussing my work with external auditors. Every day is varied, some days I might be deep in analysis and end up dreaming about spreadsheets, but then the next day I might be writing a formal report or presenting.

Are you working on any exciting projects that you can share?
Alongside my BAU role there’s always something to get involved in, particularly within such a large organisation. On the Actuarial side I’ve been involved in Natural Catastrophe reserving for the last few years, which has been incredibly interesting given the focus on Climate Change in the insurance market. I’ve also worked as part of the Planning team, learning a workstream to redefine the process for allocating product planning down to legal entity. I do try to get involved with other areas too – I’m the study manager for our department, so I’m able to support students through their exams, and I also sit on a RISE sub-committee, a group which was created to drive the inclusion and development of historically underrepresented groups within the organisation.

What are your plans for the future?
That’s a great question! My 5 year plan was to qualify (tick) and lead the reserving for a material line of business (tick). I love my role and team at AXA XL but am currently thinking about where I want my career to go long-term.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to follow the same career path?
I would say be open to all opportunities. When I was initially applying for graduate roles my aim was a consultancy, and ideally focussing on pricing. In the end the job offers I got were all insurance companies, and all for reserving roles – so I went with it and have ended up really enjoying progressing my reserving career.

What was your favourite memory from your time at Kent?
It is difficult to pick just one! I made some friends for life, and also got to call the beautiful city of Canterbury home. My Year in Industry was a great way to test out that I actually did want to be an Actuary, and I had some great support from the University in applying for both placements and graduate roles. I think my absolute top memory though is graduating in Canterbury Cathedral. Our ceremony was in the evening, there was a beautiful sunset, very much a pinch-yourself moment!