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Retirement Graduate Programme – Consultant

Before you apply, please refer to the ‘Selection Process’ area of our Graduate website for tips and advice around and how to be successful in your application with us.

The Company

Willis Towers Watson is a leading global advisory, broking and solutions company that helps clients around the world turn risk into a path for growth. With roots dating to 1828, Willis Towers Watson has 39,000 employees in more than 120 territories. We design and deliver solutions that manage risk, optimize benefits, cultivate talent, and expand the power of capital to protect and strengthen institutions and individuals. Our unique perspective allows us to see the critical intersections between talent, assets and ideas — the dynamic formula that drives business performance. Unlock your potential at Willis Towers Watson.  

The Business

Retirement is part of our largest Line of Business, Human Capital and Benefits, helping companies tackle their pension needs. In the UK and Europe, we are the undisputed leader, advising 75 of the FTSE 100 companies.

The Role

As a largely project based business, no two days are the same!  As a graduate at Willis Towers Watson you will start to experience this straight away, and see this continue as your career develops. 

Day to day work will include regular project meetings and you will work alongside some of the industry’s top consultants and on client projects including many household names. 

In a nutshell, Retirement consultants calculate the cost of paying people's pensions, communicate these values and discuss and provide advice around the consequences of these values. From day one, Retirement graduates will be involved in all stages of this process. You will work with different consultants across a range of client teams of varying sizes, meaning you will work with many people on contrasting challenges day-in day-out.

There is no typical day for a Retirement graduate. One day you can be calculating actuarial values for individuals - from pension scheme members involved in divorce cases to high profile individuals' pensions for publication in a company's accounts. The next day you can be drafting a report to tell a FTSE 100 Finance Director what the value of his company's pension scheme is so he can work out whether a merger will go ahead or not. This is why Retirement consultants demonstrate great flexibility, good consulting and communication skills, the ability to plan work effectively and a strong desire to solve challenging problems. 

Career path and Study Support

Over the first two years, you will learn the basics. The skills you learn on the job will be supplemented by the actuarial exams and an extensive two-year graduate training course. This involves about a dozen training courses (usually two days each) that will develop your technical and consulting skills. Training continues throughout your time at Willis Towers Watson – you will typically receive two training courses a year in the next four or five years and further training as required after this.

Client contact will come early - through pension scheme administrators and a company's internal pension team - and will increase as you become more senior. Within five years, you may be attending client meetings and running Trustee training sessions on your own. After this, the role develops into being a main adviser or Scheme Actuary, taking responsibility for the client relationship. There are also opportunities to manage other associates, train other associates and become an account manager as your career progresses.

Graduates in Retirement study for the actuarial exams of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries. On successful completion of the exams, graduates become a Fellow of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries. Willis Towers Watson offers a complete and flexible study support package that includes:

  • Membership fees of the Actuarial profession
  • Providing study materials for each exam such as course notes, sample questions, past paper questions, mock exams and revision notes 
  • Paying for tutorials for each exam 
  • Cost of sitting each exam and a re-sit attempt if required study leave – roughly one day per week 
  • A large body of students working through the same exams, as well as qualified actuaries willing to lend their support
  • Graduates receive salary increases for each exam passed in addition to increases that may be awarded as part of your annual salary review.

The Requirements 

As a minimum when applying you should meet our entry criteria: 

2:1 Degree in a numerate discipline and 300 UCAS points (across 3 'A' levels or equivalent), OR
2:1 Degree in any discipline and 300 UCAS points (across 3 'A' levels or equivalent) including Maths at grade A or B.

Start date for the UK Graduate Programme will be the end of August 2017.

Remember to mention TARGETjobs when contacting employers!

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