An eye-opening internship experience

Back in September 2019, I did my internship in the leading insurance company in Malaysia which was AIA Bhd. It was really an impactful experience for me as I got to know what it was like to be in an actuarial office. I have a goal to be a successful actuary and this experience was really a useful one.

AIA Malaysia is a life insurance company. I worked in the pricing department of group insurance and I learned many things while working there.

Firstly, I played a role as a reviewer for the annual claim lag and IBNR study that was done by the corporate solutions department. I was given a full document to study before doing this review. I had to give feedback on some questionable parts of the study so that it could be further improved.

Next, I also played a role in summarizing and analyzing the data for new group businesses and its renewal. This task was performed using Microsoft Excel. After summarizing the data, I had to calculate the net loss ratio, claim per policy, and premium per policy. This information is important as I had to report the persistence of the new businesses and its retention in the company.

Then, I was also involved in the annual retention spread study. I had to analyze the overall retention and ensure that this percentage can be maintained through companies with different sizes.

Furthermore, I was given the role of an actuarial analyst to research the profitability and the calculation method of Experience Refund (ER). This benefit has been in practice for quite some time, however, its profitability and method of calculation has yet to be explored. The current method is just a calculation following the methodology of previous years. My task is to be able to prove whether this method is profitable to AIA Bhd or if it should be changed.

My team was a very small team comprising of my supervisor and a senior. They were very patient when I ask questions and were very willing to teach me when I do not understand. They spent time going through the concepts with me and helped me to grasp the underlying concepts before asking me to do something. My supervisor had the principle to ensure I know what I am going to do even before I start. From this, I learned that I must always know what I am going to do thoroughly before I start.

Besides learning many things in the company, I also tried to be a blessing to the people in the company. I managed to contribute by being proactive. I actively sought to learn in any way possible and tried to ask if I could help with anything after I finish the work given to me. This hopefully can help ease the workload in my department for a little bit.

Besides that, I contributed by going the extra mile. When I was given a task, I did not do it blindly but I tried to simplify the process. For example, if I was given a task to summarize and analyze some data, I would look for ways to sort it up so that the work becomes neater. This allowed my supervisor to follow-up with my work easily. 

Furthermore, I gave my best in everything I do. From small tasks like photostatting and scanning to larger roles like doing analysis. I tried my best to do everything that was given to me. This could reduce the work in my department and ensured high level of productivity.

Despite just being an intern and learning on job-related skills, I also learned many social skills such as planning events and managing them. I got the chance to plan and manage the end of year town hall meeting with many of their permanent staffs. It was a great experience learning from them and they were very patient with us interns.

In conclusion, it was a great internship experience. I enjoyed it and learned many things throughout the internship period. I hope the things that I learn would be useful in my future workplace.