The Government Actuary's Department has adopted a new set of quality standards across all of its work in a bid to increase the scope of its work for government departments and make it easier for the public to hold it to account.
Using the Principles For Actuarial Quality, all the work undertaken by the department will now be expected to fully comply with the Financial Reporting Council's Technical Actuarial Standards and include the relevant compliance statements in their communications with clients.
At GAD only pensions work is within the scope of the FRC standards, but the department's actuaries will also extend the principles underpinning them to their other actuarial work. The approach being used by the department also covers some extra 'sensible' principles currently not in the Technical Actuarial Standards and aims to ensure the actuaries deliver high quality work in the public interest.
Trevor Llanwarne, the government actuary, said the approach ensured strong risk management of 'the things that matter'. Actuaries would integrate the TAS principles, which are 'practical common sense', into their thought processes when undertaking work, rather than as a big add-on when the task is completed, he said.
It also aims to avoid the extra costs associated with a more traditional compliance process, which could also involve less effective risk management.
Llanwarne explained that the adoption of the principles reflected growing interest around government in the analysis actuaries can provide. Providing evidence of their professionalism and standards will enable GAD actuaries to move outside of traditional strongholds as they 'take responsibility and earn influence', he added.