Should we be spending more time looking at the Top 10 instead of focusing on the Big 4?

Posting date:10 Apr 2019

Companies are missing out on an exceptional pool of talent by concentrating their hiring efforts on graduates of the Big Four.

Newly qualified and established professionals deriving from smaller consultancies have a wealth of experience that can’t always be replicated within larger firms.

These professionals bring with them more hands-on experience within Audit, a diverse portfolio of clients and a broader technical skill-set. They have received greater commercial exposure, maintained direct contact with clients and have managed teams from a much earlier stage. Unlike those deriving from larger firms, they also have the ability to work across a multitude of disciplines and industries. 

But, while qualified professionals from smaller firms have more end-to-end - there are some arguable benefits to Big Four alumni. They are process-driven, technical and stringent; offer exposure to FTSE listed companies and understand how an organisation of this size is run. From a reputation perspective, they will always find their way into a role and are deemed to be ‘top of the crop’.

Big 4 graduates are exceptional candidates which is why many organisations focus so much of their time sourcing them. They can bring a greater understanding of international financial reporting standards, become a subject matter expert on a particular specialism and get recognised globally but, is the hierarchy at play justifiable or are smaller practices just as worthy of the crown?

I’d like to hear from you. Should we be spending more time looking at the Top 10 instead of focusing on the Big 4?

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